Celebrity Quotes, Julia Roberts

Julia Roberts on Her Good Figure: ‘It is 97 percent genetics’

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42 year-old actress Julia Roberts brings the quotes of the day:

On her constant slim figure:

“It is 97 percent genetics. Don’t let anybody tell you any crap about anything else, because that’s what it is – 97 percent genetics and three percent just get your ass moving. I should know because I’ve never met a cookie I didn’t like!”

On weight-obsessed Hollywood:

“I’m too old for that crap. It’s so silly, so pointless, and it’s motivated by a culture that for some reason finds it entertaining to perpetuate the glorification of our youth. It’s really sad and disinteresting. I mean, I know people really suffer and I just think, ‘How can they perpetuate that? It’s silly to consider it a personal triumph for myself that in almost 24 years in showbusiness – except for being pregnant – I’ve weighed within about a five to 10lb range. That seems unusual, but I’m lucky I haven’t suffered those things. I think it’s important for us to start perpetuating the healthy, happy way of looking at it as opposed to supporting the negative ideal of what a girl should ideally look like.”

… says Julia.

Do you guys agree with her thoughts?


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  • Casey

    “s unusual, but I’m lucky I haven’t suffered those things. I think it’s important for us to start perpetuating the healthy, happy way of looking at it as opposed to supporting the negative ideal of what a girl should ideally look like.” ”

    Exactly! Which is why it bothers me when people say Hollywood is a size 0 industry (it’s really not, and there’s no reason to perpetuate that belief), or when people say ALL men don’t like a certain body, or that EVERYONE should look a certain way, whether it’s skinny, curvy, or both.

    Everyone claims they want variety, but you always hear things like, “she’s not fit enough,” “she doesn’t have a waist,” “her boobs are too small/fake.” If you could actually edit people based on the criticism you receive, you would get pretty much very similar clones.

    • So true…until we stop buying into it, they’ll continue selling it to us. I’m just as guilty as anyone for not liking some type of (heftier) women…

  • Erica

    I agree with her entirely – she sounds like a sensible, down to earth woman.
    Genetics play a huge role in peoples weight and looks – you can only fight nature so much. Some people really do find it easy to stay within a healthy weight range, others find it extremely difficult to and either struggle with being overweight, or under.

    Of course we can’t totally blame genetics if we are fat because we overeat and don’t exercise – just as we can’t entriely blame genetics if we are underweight because we don’t eat or exercise enough (or exercise too much).

    At a certain point we all have to accept that we are who we are, take responsibility for our health as best we can and get on with life without obsessing over our looks.

    Most of us what we haven’t got and we enjoy seeing the imperfections in others in order to make our own seem less significant. We do need to start celebrating diversity and stop expecting every woman to have some ideal figure (which is different for everyone). We don’t all want to look the same, do we?

  • Calro

    I agree with everything she says but she is lying a bit about her weight fluctuations. They are bigger than 5-10 pounds, if you’ve seen pap photos of her on the beach, sometimes it looks more like 15-20 and then suddenly slimmer for an awards show (spanx doesn’t do THAT much). It would just be nice to have COMPLETE honesty from a celeb about their weight for once.

    • skinnyme

      I totally agree I thought that too. No way has she stayed 5-10 pounds the same she was very thin when she started acting.

      • Bonnie

        It’s possible. She’s not that tall, and 10 lbs can make a big difference in people’s appearance. Also, the amount of muscle you have on your body and your body fat percentage can fluctuate throughout life. A woman who’s 130 lbs, has plenty of muscle and does strength-training can look completely different than a 130 lb woman one who has a higher BF% (as muscle is more dense than fat), she could even wear clothing a couples sizes bigger.

        I’ve only fluctuated across a 10-lb range since I was about 14, but I’ve looked quite different depending on my habits. For instance, last time I was at this weight my hips were about 2″ bigger, but I’ve been working on building upper body strength so most of the gain in pounds is in the muscles of my upper body, rather than in my hips/thighs which is where I put on muscle and fat more easily.

  • Victoria

    Obesity runs in both sides of my family-I’m talking over 300 lbs. and it’s hard to fight it off and I’m only 19. I really agree with her. I hear women come on this website and complain about being 115 or something crazy. It’s hard to get under 130 for me and I’m 5’3 so please be grateful!!!

  • Polly

    Throughout her whole career she seemed to stay grounded, never falling for fads and whatnot. Yes, she’s very demanding when it comes to money, but if you can get it, why not!

  • Em

    Julia, you’re gorgeous and I love you on the movie screen. But I have to disagree with you. It is not 97% genetics. It is 70% diet, 20% training, and 10% genetics. I know this for a fact. I was a plump chick who just couldn’t get my weight down no matter how hard I worked out. Then I found a trainer who showed me how to eat right and I learned how to have a body like the ladies in fitness magazines (that’s the body I wanted). And now I have it. My genetics are two overweight parents with no muscle tone and I was able to overcome that in about 6-7 months after changing my diet. So don’t tell people they have to be born with it Julia. Sheesh, talk about a depressing thought. If you aren’t born with it you can’t have it. Ugh. That is so rude!

    • Rebecca B

      I agree. Yes, some have genetics that allow them to gorge on sugar, and never gain an ounce. My best friend is like that. But just because you don’t have those “perfect” genes doesn’t mean that you have to spend your life being overweight! It’s my feeling that your body is designed to be healthy and fit, which means that if you give it the right tools, you can get slim. 🙂

    • Effie

      I think what JR means by the “97 per cent genetics” is that we all have a “set point” – i.e. our bodies are genetically programmed to be a certain weight naturally, if we eat properly and exercise in moderation.

      Everyone has different set points, but everyone has the potential to mess with their set point – either to put on weight by lack of exercise and poor diet, or to lose an unnatural amount by excessive exercise and dietary restriction.

      So in your case Em, you changed your dietary and exercise plan, and reached a set point your body would naturally tend toward with the right physical and nutritional “ingredients.”

      • Erica

        Very well put. I totally agree!

  • Nicole

    Love you Julia, telling it like it is! Frankly, it’s refreshing. I agree that genetics plays a huge role – I mean that is where your body shape comes from! I will always be a pear, unless I work out and restrict. I think that is what she is saying in regards to 97% genetics, because that is her…

    I mean, yeah, you can bust your bum and force your body to be something it reaaaaaally doesn’t want to do, and you will get results, but in the end, your body wants to be at a certain weight

  • Katy

    I think everyone has a size and weight they look best at, and if you take care of yourself you will end up at that or near that. You can do more to look different, but really why bother? If you’re healthy you should be happy, coz a lot of people don’t have that. I once dieted and restricted to get under 50 kilos at 5’6. I looked really bad. I know some people who are that weight but look fine. It’s a personal thing.

  • Lisa

    I like her. But I still don’t think anyone should underestimate the importance of a good diet. A lot of people think they can get by with just their metabolism and genetics, so they don’t pay attention to what they eat. They might never gain a pound (until later), but their insides might be crap.

  • She has been named one of People magazine’s “50 Most Beautiful People in the World” eleven times, tied with Halle Berry. In 2001, Ladies Home Journal ranked her as the 11th most powerful woman in America, ahead of then national security advisor Condoleezza Rice and first lady Laura Bush.[3] Roberts has a production company called Red Om Films, formerly Shoelace Productions, whose name is “Moder” (her husband’s last name) spelled backwards, as well as a reference to the sacred Om symbol in Hinduism, which Roberts practices.

  • aj

    It’s a nice message she’s spreading but like… I’ve always found her body pretty normal, nothing amazing to be kinda saying ‘everything I have its because of genetics’ like what she has is so amazing.. hmm i dunno. she has always seemed average to me. But she seems like a good role model anyway.

  • skirmute

    I totally agree with a point that genetics play a big role but a healthy lifestyle can make a good inprovement to one’s figure too. I’m not talking about insane diets or exessive exercising – sensible eating and working out regularly can make a huge difference.
    Julia says she’s blessed with good genes so she basically doesn’t understand what is it like to struggle with your weight, to deprive yourself in order to look good. Let’s say, Hollywood standarts are high and many women in that industry have to be the way they are supposed to be, breaking standards is not acceptable. So I wonder what would she say if she wasn’t naturally slim and couldn’t stuff her face with cookies whenever she wants? Would she say-screw it, I’m gonna be fat and beautiful and you guys have to love me the way I am? Well, I don’t think so. She’d be exactly the same as almost every woman in Hollywood, trying to conform with the rules of the industry.
    By the way, she doesn’t promote a healfy lifestyle, she only says women should enjoy their lives, which makes sense but for those who do not meet the standards it’s not a way out.

  • Serafiina

    Hmm, 97 per cent is definetely exaggeration, you can influence much more. I wouldn´t tell it´s crap.
    The last part is true though.

    • Casey

      I think she meant for her body it’s 97 percent genetics.

      • Serafiina

        aah, okay 🙂

  • Mia

    Forget about genetics, I think what makes the biggest difference is: 1. not being obsessed with food, exercise or weight, and 2. maintaining a sensible lifestyle that consists of not overeating and staying active.

    The more you think about your weight the more difficult it becomes to be sensible about it, because it turns into an obsession.

    I don’t know whether Julia is telling the truth about her weight or not, but I have been the exact same weight for the past 20 years, and I maintain that by NOT thinking about it every waking moment of my life and not spending too much time stressing out about it.

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