Alison Sweeney has been in the public eye since she was a teen, having started her now 21-year run on “Days of Our Lives” at just 17. And although she is preparing to wrap up her time as a soap star — 2014 will be her last year on “Days of Our Lives” — Sweeney shows no sign of slowing down. She is still the host of NBC’s fitness phenom “The Biggest Loser” and is looking to make her mark in the world of chick lit, all the while staying focused on healthy living.
Sweeney’s newest book, Scared Scriptless, hits shelves June 3. It centers on a woman who works as a script supervisor on the set of a hit TV show. Sweeney calls the novel “a fun, light read that shows what it’s really like to work behind the scenes in Hollywood. It’s sexy and a bit gossipy, too. Obviously it’s fictional, but a lot of it came from stories I’ve heard and my own experiences on sets.”
Scared Scriptless is Sweeney’s follow-up to her first novel, The Star Attraction, another dishy showbiz tale. She’s penned two nonfiction books as well— All The Days of My Life (So Far) and The Mommy Diet. Now four books into her writing career, Sweeney works hard to stay on top of her crazy schedule. “My situation and schedule are different from those of a lot of people. So I try to think about things ahead of time and plan out my day with time for my workouts,” she says.
Eating the right food is equally important to the star. She keeps healthy snacks in her purse so she always has access to a good food choice. “I like to cook, too, so that’s a step ahead,” Sweeney says. “There’s so much you can do in the kitchen to make healthy food that’s really delicious, and I’m focused on providing complete meals that are appropriately portioned for my kids and me. Portion size is such a problem in this country.”
And although the actress-writer admits it can sometimes be difficult to completely avoid unhealthy and tempting foods, especially when it comes to social events, she does have little tricks to keep herself on track. “I try to eat before I go out. If you’re hungry when you go to a party, you’re going to end up eating a lot of the snacks and dip that are set up. If you fill up on protein and veggies before you go, you won’t eat as much of the unhealthy foods. Or you can roast almonds with your favorite seasoning and give them as a hostess gift or put the food out with the rest of the spread.”
Hosting “The Biggest Loser” and seeing the contestants transform from morbidly obese to fit and healthy inspires Sweeney to keep health a priority in her own life. It also gives her the chance to be a part of something she describes as “incredibly inspiring. It makes me feel so good to be a part of this amazing, motivating show. What I like best about ‘The Biggest Loser’ is that it’s about more than weight loss — it’s really about showing that you can make that big of a life change.”
Her time on “The Biggest Loser” has affected her life in another way as well. The show has allowed her to meet new friends who remain in her life even after the show wraps. “I feel emotionally invested in every single contestant who comes through,” Sweeney says. “So many of them are just such amazing people, and I love seeing and checking in with them. We’re all Facebook friends, and it’s so great to get updates on their progress and keep in touch with them all.”