Wow! Is it challenging to raise your children as vegans? Is it something your whole family practices as well?
No, not my whole family. My parents only became vegetarian a couple of years ago. My kids have been raised vegan. There are certain challenges, but there are challenges to trying to eat kosher or trying to eat healthy no matter what. For me, I think it’s been really worth it to have my boys appreciate food in its natural state. It actually makes it really easy and inexpensive to feed them because for them, a raw carrot is a snack. I think the health benefits, the lifestyle benefits, and, honestly, the ethical benefits are worth the trouble. Yes, they can’t necessarily eat easily at any roadside restaurant if we’re on a road trip, but we figure it out and we don’t figure it out in an expensive way.
What about in other scenarios, like a “night out” for example? Is it just as difficult to find vegan options when you go out to restaurants and functions?
Sure, especially in LA or in any major city. Everybody seems to have some sort of allergy or food thing these days. Even in places where there are no vegan options—and I talk about this in the book specifically—if your children enjoy eating salad, that’s a really important thing. If they don’t mind eating pasta with marinara sauce, that’s sometimes what my kids end up eating. That’s not what they eat every day. That’s not what I’m going to feed them every day, because I like them to eat things with a little color, but that’s a negligible thing. We just went to Denny’s and they have an awesome vegan burger! There are a lot of places that are now accommodating. Whether you’re vegan or not, every major medical organization has supported us eating more fruits and vegetables, less protein from animal sources and less processed food. So, to me, it’s not really about veganism; it’s about trying to understand how and what we eat affects public health care and costs that we all end up paying towards healthcare.
That’s a good point. Assuming that you have a moment to breathe in between doubling as an actress and a busy mom, what do you like to do for fun?
I like running. I like music. I play piano when I can.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
Oh my gosh. I was on The Howard Stern Show for my book and I think it was the most amazing hour of my career. It was incredible to meet him and talk with him. We kind of talked about everything. It was just an amazing, amazing interview.
Are you anxious about hitting the big 4-0 soon?
No, I’ve got a couple years. I’m kind of anxious all the time, so that sort of takes care of it.
You’ve basically been in Hollywood for the majority of your life. Has the business changed from how you remember it in your youth?
Oh yeah! I mean, the fact that the Internet exists has really changed things. It changes the publicity machine. There’s a much stronger emphasis on perfection, especially for women and bodies. There’s much more of a public consciousness of what celebrities are doing and wearing. It was not like that in the 90’s when I was on Blossom. I think there’s an extra emphasis on young actresses looking like adults. There’s a lot of fashion for grownup looks, like things that I wore when I was 6 years old—teeny tiny shorts and knee high socks. Then we see a lot of young actresses who are 10, 11, 12, really being dressed up as if they’re 30. I think that’s something that’s really shifted and I think that part of it is the internet culture. That’s really changed everything.
Catch Mayim Bialik in new episodes of The Big Bang Theory this September on CBS!
Mayim Bialik Interview “Beauty and the Brain” originally published in Cliché Magazine’s Aug/Sept 2014 issue.
Photographer: Quavondo, Stylist: Ja’niya Walker, Hair: Robert Ramos of Celestine Agency, Makeup: Mirana Gravani of Celestine Agency