"I find myself in the unique position of eating for a living while still being expected to look a certain way… let's call it 'red carpet ready," she wrote in a guest column for The Hollywood Reporter. "While I can clearly point to the many ways our society constantly reinforces this pressure, the truth is, my own vanity also plays a big role. I want to look good, to be fit and to fit into those fancy couture dresses."
"It's always a nail-biting extravaganza at fittings, praying that a few pretty dresses that came down the runway on a teenage model who is a size 0 will miraculously fit my 40-something body," she continued. "It's like a poem: no meat, no wheat, no cheese, no fried foods or sweets. And, of course, no alcohol."
Lakshmi said she was just about ready to get back to her diet when she noticed that her 7-year-old daughter, Krishna, was starting to pick up on what she was doing.
"She's noticed, and suddenly, she's told me and others in our circle, 'I don't want to eat because I'm watching my figure,' or, 'I weigh too much,'" Lakshmi revealed. "Her comments stopped me dead in my tracks. Her words scared me. Language matters. We send signals to our daughters every day. And I am her first touchstone of femininity."
"Every message I telegraph about food and our bodies is important," she added. "So, this year, I've decided my weight will not be my focus. If I need a bigger dress, so be it. That one day -- or any day -- on the red carpet isn't nearly as important as making sure my daughter doesn't measure her worth by her dress size."