OnlyOnAOL: How Padma Lakshmi eats, and stays this fit and foxy

By: Donna Freydkin

What stirs Padma Lakshmi?

A hunger for information about -- well, you name it, and she is interested.

"I just want to know. I'm genuinely curious about how to make stuff. I Couldn't do this if I genuinely didn't love cooking. I'm a storehouse of useless knowledge. I'm great at Jeopardy," she says.

She's also pretty deft in the kitchen, launching her line of Padma's Easy Exotic rices. And then she just released "The Encyclopedia of Spices and Herbs: An Essential Guide to the Flavors of the World," which manages to make cumin and cilantro both sexy and seductive.

Lakshmi makes one home-cooked meal a day for her and daughter Krishna. You eat what's in front of you. And Lakshmi loves her global cuisines, and know every detail about every seasoning mentioned in her book. "I want to know that the Romans used sumac," she says. "To me, that's really interesting.

To stay in shape, she works out and boxes. You won't get any of that "fast metabolism" nonsense from her that so many other celebrities spew forth -- Lakshmi gains weight when shooting "Top Chef" and she works to be fit. Plus, she pays attention to what she consumes.

"I drink. I'm not the kind of person who'd have a glass of wine alone at home. But if I go out to dinner or to a cocktail party, I'll have a couple of Margaritas. If i'm trying to lose weight -- I didn't drink a month before the Emmys," she says.

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Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
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Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
Padma Lakshmi does AOL BUILD
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