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Q&A with Kathy Bates

The veteran actress, who is in three movies and two TV series this year, talks about what she learned from surviving ovarian cancer.

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Kate [Hudson] lost quite of bit of weight for the movie, and her makeup was certainly reminiscent to me of my own face. My own complexion got very white and I lost all my hair. It was sometimes hard to look at.

What's your favorite healthy food?

One of the things that I eat on set for a quick protein snack is beef jerky. I'm trying to balance my carbs and proteins.

What do you do for relaxation?

I love to read and to play with my three dogs. I also love my iPad and being online and seeing what's going on in the world. I don't tweet and I don't do Facebook, but I like surfing the Web.

Do you find yourself recommending a healthy personal practice to your friends?

I don't really proselytize -- it's more the other way. Everybody at work has their own idea of what keeps them going, and most of it involves something that tastes really terrible. So I'm afraid I'm on the receiving end of those kinds of tips and not the one that hands them out.

What's the one piece of health advice you'd give to other women?

Don't let your weight get out of control. Once that happens you go on diets and you get on a yo-yo effect with your weight. That's the one health problem that I have fought all my life and I wish I had been able to get a handle on when I was younger.

What are your best health habits?

I cut Cokes out of my diet. It's so easy to reach for one for the caffeine and sugar when you're at work, but I cut it out.

Who in your life has influenced you the most when it comes to your health?

My costumer, Mel, is very conscious about her eating habits and has really taught me a lot. She's very well versed in her diet and has been helpful to me in terms of what to eat during the day to keep my energy going.

Where do you see yourself in five years?

I hope I'm still working at top pace like this. You know, I wouldn't mind working for another five years and then looking forward to retiring. I would love to perhaps retire in another country, like France -- or who knows, maybe stay here. Right now, I'm just happy working and I hope our show runs for a good few years.

How can women learn more about the symptoms of ovarian cancer?

The Ovarian Cancer National Alliance has symptom diaries at www.ovariancancer.org to help women track possible symptoms of ovarian cancer.

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Reviewed on August 21, 2011

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