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Meat-and-greet role on ‘The Chew’

As co-host of “The Chew” (a food and talk show on ABC), Daphne Oz gets to sample items like the Big Mike Burger (two patties, three buns and cheese), chicken and dumplings a la Gwyneth Paltrow and pizza by fellow host Mario Batali.

But the daughter of celeb TV doctor Mehmet Oz also penned “The Dorm Room Diet: The 10-Step Program for Creating a Healthy Lifestyle Plan That Really Works” and helped found HealthCorps, a nonprofit that promotes teen health.

Oz talked about fitness and her meat-loving co-hosts in a recent interview. (Catch the podcast at latimes.com/daphneoz.)

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Have you been a good influence on your co-hosts -- or have they corrupted you? After all, chef Michael Symon is known for wearing a T-shirt that says “offal.”

I didn’t grow up eating meat -- I was a vegetarian until I was 18. But being on the show, I’ve been able to try different preparations of it, and I have to tell you that Michael and Mario are making some wonderful meals.

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What was it like being raised by Dr. Oz?

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My dinner table was a pretty wild one; we covered topics ranging from the latest research on the effects of vitamin D and brain growth to minimally invasive cardiothoracic surgery.

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Has health always been important to you?

I was a good 30 pounds overweight throughout high school, and it wasn’t until I was going away to college that I really wanted to make sure I was doing everything possible to feel as confident as I could.

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Everyone has their own definition of a healthy lifestyle, and mine has come to mean making health a priority but not an obsession.

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Your approach to fitness?

Exercise is important, but exercise in a gym is not important. Go and take a walk outside. Skip the umpteenth coffee date and go for a hike instead. Take the stairs. Walk your errands.

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I hear you’re an avid indoor cyclist.

I love it. It’s like going to a wild dance party. You have the humming of the team all around you keeping you motivated. And there’s great music. They light aromatherapy candles.

It’s as close to a spa experience while burning 500 calories in an hour that you can get.

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-- Jeannine Stein


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