Reality TV star Bethenny Frankel of Bravo's "Bethenny Ever After" was our guest recently on a live Web chat about staying fit and healthy physically and mentally. Frankel, the author of "A Place of Yes: 10 Rules for Getting Everything You Want Out of Life," talked with readers about exercise, nutrition and having a balanced life. She spent an extra few minutes with us answering a few more questions about the book and about her attitude toward diet and fitness. Be sure to read the archived chat in its entirely on our chat page.
Q: In writing "A Place of Yes," what did you want to add to the dialog about success and self-help?
A: I wanted to talk about the power of positive thinking and that you don't always have to know what you want -- you can be on the road and you'll eventually get there. It can be a circuitous route but if you stay the course you'll eventually get there. You can't assume anyone is smarter than you are, and sometimes you have to do things on your own without taking a democratic survey.
Q: You're a natural foods chef and you're obviously in great shape, but on the show we see you treating yourself occasionally to things like hamburgers and fries. What is your philosophy about maintaining a balanced diet?
A: I think that everybody is trying to figure out how to deprive themselves instead of how to indulge themselves. People treat food as their best friend or their worst enemy -- you were good when you didn't eat and bad when you did. We have to figure out a way to incorporate food in our lives in a good way, rather than binging and starving and going on crash diets that people can't sustain.
On the show I'm not trying to prove any sort of point -- 99% of my fans know this is how I live. Some people have said that I don't exercise that much on the show. I don't go to a gym, but I work out on my own -- I have an elliptical trainer at home, but it's not that interesting to watch. And I run a lot and I did ice skating for a couple of months.
Q: You've been open about your past struggles with diet and body image. What do you want to teach your daughter Bryn when she's older about having a healthy attitude toward food and her body?
A: We'll incorporate it naturally into her life. I don't think drumming it into a kid's head is healthy. I don't think it's good to constantly talk about your own weight and the fact that you look fat in jeans. It's better to be relaxed about it and have healthy foods around but not obsess about it.
Be sure to check out all the Web chats from the L.A. Times and our sister Tribune papers. Join a live Web chat on Monday at 11 a.m. Pacific Time (1 p.m. Central, 2 p.m. Eastern) with orthopedic surgeon Dr. John Meding on how to stay active after having knee replacement surgery.