Everything Has Worked Well

Juhi Chawla on beauty

Juhi CHAWLA on beauty, health, fitness and wellness.

Juhi Chawla, one of India’s most renowned actresses, film producers and entrepreneurs, needs no introduction. She came and won the Miss India beauty pageant, in 1984. She soon established herself as one of the top stars of Hindi cinema — right from the late 1980s through to the early 2000s. She’s recognised just as much for her amazing charm, comic timing and vibrant on-screen and off-screen persona, as much as for her long list of accolades, including two Filmfare awards. 

Your view on beauty?

Beauty is what you are in your mind. It’s being peaceful, also serene. Artificial make-up isn’t beauty. Well, I take off my make-up with baby oil. I have an oily scalp. So, I shampoo and condition my hair frequently. Every month, I get my face clean-up to rid blackheads and whiteheads. I also enjoy going to the spa. I pamper myself with a good body and hair massage, manicure and pedicure. 

Your ‘take’ on fitness?   

I am convinced that physical and mental fitness are of great importance in my life — it holds good for everyone, whatever one’s age. I’ve realised the benefits of yoga — I’m a big fan of Iyengar yoga. When I was a kid, I used to think yoga was for elderly folks. Well, I didn’t quite know the magic of yoga. I’d strongly recommend, if you want to be together, focused, and composed in this frenzied world and manage all its madness, try yoga, or any form of exercise that suits you, but do it regularly, also religiously.

I go for a half-hour brisk walk on the treadmill when I have the time. I’ve learnt music, so it’s a meditative exercise for me. Though I am ‘allergic’ to gym workouts, I do hit the treadmill 2-3 times a week. I also go for brisk walks.

I love pilates too. It gives you a happy feeling. My body has changed with it and has become more flexible — following an injury. 

Your view of health and wellness? 

Health and wellness is not just in the body, but also the mind. Your diet is just as important for balance. In other words, a sound mind in a sound body.

I am a vegetarian, but we do eat eggs as well. I take three proper meals a day, lots of vegetables and juices. I avoid oily food. I begin my day with a bottle of water, or lime juice with honey. 

  • My breakfast. Eggs and brown bread toast/oatmeal porridge/idli sambar and a glass of fresh fruit juice, or a cup of tea
  • My lunch and dinner. Lunch consists of veggies, lentils and rotis [made of jowar, bajra or nachni, alternately, apart from wheat] with soup and salad sometimes. I avoid white rice. I eat brown, or red unpolished rice. Dinner is the same as lunch
  • My childhood memory of food. Mango milkshakes with cubes of ice on hot summer afternoons in New Delhi, playing board games with my cousins, laughing, fighting and having fun
  • When I am shooting. I try to carry dry fruits, like kaju, raisins and pista for hunger pangs in-between meals, but I forget and end up eating something useless instead. In the evenings, I ask for a fruit, or juice. I am tempted to eat a toasted snack, so I have to control my urges
  • In my fridge you will always find. Lots of veggies, yogurt, jams and vanilla ice-cream. It’s simple and
  • nice to serve vanilla ice-cream with freshly-cut fruit, like grapes, oranges, or mango, as dessert
  • My Sunday lunch. Masala dosa with a glass of cold chaas
  • My comfort food. A piece of dark, or almond, chocolate, or brownie.
  • My favourite food. Paneer shashlik
  • My favourite beverage. Coconut water, or pineapple juice.

Your ‘take’ on work-life balance?  

There is nothing like perfect work-life balance. My parents were also working, so I hope my children see it that way. I never had any problem with it and I never felt guilty. When I hark back, I’d call it a rollercoaster. It has happened that when I was away and my kids got sick, I’d co-ordinate on phone. Somehow, everything has worked out well, always. There is also no perfect moment, or life, and it is okay, when it works out well, in the beginning, and also at the end of the day. 

Your mantra to beat stress? 

The ‘bestest’ thing that one can do to free one’s mind of stress and fear and to write your ‘thank-yous’ before you go to sleep — every day.

JUHI CHAWLA is a renowned Indian actress, model, film producer, and entrepreneur. The winner of the 1984 Miss India beauty pageant and two Filmfare awards, the ever-charming Chawla has worked predominantly in Bollywood, aside from Kannada, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Bengali, and Punjabi films. This piece has been collated and curated from material available on the ‘Net. Juhi Chawla: Photo: Creative Commons Attribution 3.0

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