Zoe Saldana, Avatar Actress, Follows Yoga for Healthy Mind and Body after Having Kids

Zoe Saldana
Photo credit: Felipe Ramales / Splash News

Zoe Saldana’s kids are an important part of her life. After having twin boys in 2014, Bowie and Cy, yoga has become a part of her post-baby exercise plan. Avatar actress Zoe Saldana works with yoga instructor Arielle McFadden twice a week.

McFadden structures Saldana’s workouts based on how the actress is feeling that day. For instance, some days Saldana will arrive at her workout exhausted. On days her kids wake her up in the middle of night, McFadden will give the 38-year-old Saldana a good stretch-focused workout; whereas other days, the workout will be more intense and will focus on her glutes and core muscles.

Saldana’s trainer loves to get her clients to do forearm planks, because it focuses on the core more than any other muscle in the body. Saldana will sit in the forearm plank position for about 30 seconds before pushing up into a regular plank, and then reverting back to a forearm plank.

McFadden and Saldana also work on the gluteus maximus and gluteus medius muscles by doing leg lifts. The chair posture has Saldana sit back and squat, which engages her core and also focuses on the glutes and hamstring muscles. Check out Saldana in a leg-extended downward dog posture, which she posted on Instagram:

Besides being an amazing physical workout, yoga is also about mindfulness. It really is a full mind and body workout. She enjoys doing deep breathing exercises and meditation. Practicing silence, patience, and self-awareness are very important for moms like Saldana.

Yoga brings balance to her busy life, which includes her family, her acting career, and her own production company. In 2016, Saldana starred in Star Trek Beyond, and the musical bio drama Nina. Saldana will also appear in three future Avatar sequels in 2018, 2020, and 2022.

Zoe Saldana’s Healthy Diet and Lifestyle

Zoe Saldana also has a healthy diet that supports her Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. It is an autoimmune disease where the immune system attacks and kills her thyroid cells. Hashimoto’s thyroiditis is also considered the most common cause of hypothyroidism. Saldana’s symptoms include pain and stiffness in the joints, muscle weakness, fatigue, and depression.

Her diet is gluten-free, and she eats lots of nutrient-dense vegetables and fruit. For breakfast, she may have almond milk, macadamia nuts, mango, pineapple, dried banana, and chia seeds. She also consumes protein shakes and green juices. Lunch and dinner will sometimes include a turkey burger with a baked yam and green vegetables, a lentil salad with veggies, a cauliflower or quinoa flour crust pizza with cherry tomatoes and arugula, or a buckwheat noodle salad with veggies and chicken.

Besides Saldana’s yoga workouts, she also works out with trainer Steve Moyer. The Moyer workouts include a variety of exercises like plank pushups, squats, jumping lunges, and a hanging knee raise. Saldana has also used her trainer’s food delivery service called MoyerMeals, which avoid artificial ingredients, sugar, and gluten. After a workout, Zoe Saldana consumes a protein-heavy meal, like grilled honey ginger chicken with quinoa and zucchini.

Hannum, C., “Here’s The Mind And Body Practice That Zoe Saldana Swears By,” SELF web site, Sept. 8, 2016; http://www.self.com/story/heres-the-mind-and-body-practice-that-zoe-saldana-swears-by.