- Chelsea Handler opened up about her diet, fitness, and self-care routine a new interview with Health.
- The comedian gave up excessive drinking and starting meditating and exercising regularly after seeking therapy.
- Handler hopes her healthier choices will help her remain “vibrant” and “youthful” as she turns 45 on February 25.
You’re used to Chelsea Handler cracking jokes on stage, but the comedian got serious about her diet, fitness, and self-care routine in a new interview with Health. At 44, Handler told the outlet she’s the healthiest she’s ever been, but it took some work to get there.
“Like anybody, I struggle with insecurities and self-doubt,” Handler said. “A lot of people tell me that I’m fearless. I don’t feel fearless.” While the Life Will Be The Death of Me author considers herself “happy now,” the star admitted she long struggled with eliminating things in her life that don’t lead to happiness.
“It took me a long time to figure that out,” she told Health. “For me, it was about finding moderation with everything in my life.” One important step? She started to see a therapist regularly, who told her that she needed to slow down. “I was always going 110 miles an hour … I had to learn to sit with my feelings, not run from them.”
Handler said she turned within to address childhood traumas and embrace a healthier lifestyle. “You can’t go around the world trying to be this great person if you’re not even being compassionate with yourself,” she said. “For me, that was incentive enough to get healthy.” Here’s exactly what she did to become the healthiest version of herself, and why wellness is a priority for the comedian today.
She fully embraced the benefits of therapy.
Change doesn’t happen overnight, and Handler knows this firsthand. She struggled with opening up to her therapist at first. “It was uncomfortable. I tried very hard in therapy to not cry,” she said. But then during a session, her therapist “caught her off guard,” leaving her in tears. “After that, it became easier. I understand now that vulnerability is not weakness—that vulnerability is strength.”
Handler feels that the experience changed her for the better. “I’m calm—and that leads to being more decent and being kinder. That calm is what I needed,” she said. “Now with all the tools I have, I understand how to be myself without being over-the-top, overbearing, or in people’s faces all the time. I’m much more thoughtful now.”
She said goodbye to excessive drinking.
Handler admitted that she “used to drink all the time. I thought I could handle my alcohol, but I didn’t realize how much your body and your life changes when it’s not in your life every day,” she said.
Although the comedian no longer drinks in excess, she wants to be clear that she’s not cutting alcohol out cold turkey. “Now I’m not giving up drinking… I would never do that to people—or to alcohol,” she said. “But it’s nice to wake up with clarity and to take a break from the bloat.”
Handler says the change has also boosted her energy levels. “I like to get up early. Now I get up at 5 a.m. every single day,” she said, adding that excessive drinking led her to feel worse, crave unhealthy foods, and drink more. “I don’t want to live like that,” she explained. “I’m in my 40s now, so I have to give a s— about the way I look and actually take care of my health from the inside out.”
Now, she’s “doing everything in her power” to remain youthful. “I want to be strong and vibrant. I want to be a force of nature,” she said. “There are so many benefits that come your way from living a healthier lifestyle … But I feel much better all around. I feel balanced and grounded now.”
She exercises, but is still working on her diet.
The comedian told Health that she exercises “pretty much every day. I just like to feel strong, and now it’s part of my mental strength.”
When it comes to her diet, though, Handler admits that she still has some work to do. “I’ve had a terrible relationship with food,” she said, adding that she grew up eating macaroni and cheese and Almond Joys. “I was all out of sorts when I moved to Los Angeles. I’ve basically experimented with every eating disorder there is.”
“I took water pills for, like, 20 years. The pills kind of drain your fluids, so you [look] thinner and leaner,” she added. “That was a problem for a long time. I took them way longer than I should have.”
But the author has come a long way in her journey towards health. “It’s tough being a woman. I try to set a good example, but sometimes I’m not being a good example,” she admitted. Fortunately, Handler said she didn’t have any major damage following her history with disordered eating. “Now I’m the healthiest I’ve ever been,” she said.
She makes time for daily meditation.
Handler is an advocate for marijuana, citing “therapy, meditation, and weed” as the three pillars that shaped her healthier lifestyle. “Weed has had such a positive impact on me,” she said, adding that she “microdoses” with a THC gummy before bed and occasionally before exercising.
She also doesn’t go a day without meditation, even though it “annoyed” her at first. “I tried with my psychiatrist several times. He made me short recordings and long recordings, and then I’d meditate,” she said. “Sometimes I’d just masturbate. They both start with m, and your brain lets you relax after each one, so who cares?”
But once she committed to three months of meditation, it stuck, and she’s been reaping the benefits for a year now. “I like it first thing in the morning because it sets you up for the day,” she said. “It sets your intention. Be kind, be patient, and don’t react to everything. Nothing is really that important.”
As Handler enters her mid-40s, she’s already planning for the next chapter. “I’ve started to be more thought-oriented with what I’m doing in my professional life,” she said. “I want to do things because they’re powerful and they’re going to inspire others.”