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Soul Surfer: Bethany Hamilton on Health, Happiness, and Inspiration

The surfing champ tells WebMD about her healthy lifestyle, her dreams, and what it's like seeing her story portrayed on the big screen.


What is your best health habit?

I have a lot, but my favorite is surfing. It's a really good place to go where you can be strong and get good exercise and sunshine. 

What's your worse health habit?

I consider myself pretty healthy. Let me see…for me something unhealthy is some dark chocolate. Does that count? 

Barely! You don't ever crave a cheeseburger or French fries?

I'll have a couple fries if they're cooked in good oil. I don't eat hydrogenated oil or fast food at all. I really like chocolate pudding, but I have this recipe that I make: I'll get a packet of unsweetened acai and avocado and chocolate powder and blend that up with a little bit of honey and maybe a dash of mint. It's a really good, chocolate-y pudding that's good for you! 

What are a typical breakfast, lunch and dinner for you?

I love to cook. I start every day with a smoothie of acai, kale, almond milk, maybe some fruit. I make sure I have vegetables in every meal, but I'll eat fish, and eggs here and there. I also like goat cheese, that's kind of a treat for me. For dinner, I like to do a stir-fry, with kale and zucchini and onion and garlic, and maybe some fresh ahi or salmon, whatever's in the fridge. 

What is your favorite part of your body?

I don't know! I guess I like my smile. 

Are you excited about seeing your story on the big screen?

Yes! I just saw the final finished product and it turned out amazing. It's really inspirational and something I hope people can relate to if they're going through a hard time. And for people who haven't been around the ocean much, you really experience the power and the beauty of it. 

Other than surfing, do you do other kinds of exercise?

I'll run maybe a couple times a week for 40 minutes to get my heart rate up, and I like to go on hikes with my dog. I like to play tennis, too. I'm not that good, but I'm working on it! 

If you had to lose one sense -- sight, smell, hearing, touch, taste -- what would you choose? 

I could probably go without smell. Even though I love the smell of roses, and when you're cooking garlic. But if I had to choose… 

Do you have any physical goals you want to reach but haven't?

I'm kind of just constantly trying to better my own personal health. I'd like to have a little more flexibility. I stretch a bit, but there are certain parts of me that aren't that flexible and I'd like to work on that.  

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