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Women's Health

Q&A With Jessica Alba

The actress and mother talks about living -- and writing -- "The Honest Life."
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What's the best health advice anyone has ever given you?

"Read labels. Know what you're buying and what you're bringing into your home."

When you're choosing a doctor for yourself or the girls, what quality is most important to you?

"Someone who is not patronizing or condescending and who will engage in a conversation with me about things as opposed to just saying, 'This is how it is and how it's done.' I like to know about the process, why something has been done in a certain way, how many studies have been done. Because I was sick so much as a kid, I'm always asking, 'What is this going to do?' I'm in awe of scientists and doctors, but it's good to ask questions."

Of your five senses, which one do you value most and why?

"Sight. I just love looking at my kids!"

Who is your health role model?

"Really, my girls. Even though they do have snotty noses more than I'd want them to, I do look at them for how to live, because they're just so in the moment and they put everything in their mouths. It's a lesson that you don't have to be so sanitized. It's good to have dirt. When the babies at baby class are sharing a chew toy, I'm not freaking out. I figure go ahead, you're going to share saliva with someone at some point in your life."

Where did you get your passion for the environment?

"Maybe my grandmother. Everything was homemade and upcycled. She was like, 'I lived through the Depression. This is called survival.' She always had such a great way to glamorize it all, too. She was very creative in the way she reused things. If a shoelace was broken on one shoe, then she'd use the other shoelace as a ribbon for my ponytail. And it was cute!'

Did having children change your relationship with your own body?

"Oh, for sure. I didn't really have a relationship with my sexuality at all before I had kids. Not a fully comfortable, confident relationship with it. I was always ashamed or embarrassed or didn't know what to do with it. I was just kind of, like I'd rather just wear baggy clothes or all black. I found my groove as a woman after having them!

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