Alison Sweeney: No Dessert Without Excercise

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Jun. 29 2010, Published 12:00 p.m. ET

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Biggest Loser host Alison Sweeney runs a strict household with hubby Dave Sanov. The parents of Ben, 5, and Megan, 18 months, make sure they are positive role models in their dieting behavior.  

One rule?

“You can’t have dessert every night after dinner,” she tells me during the Crest Pro-Health Sensitive Shield and Feeding America’s Summer of Sensitivity kickoff held Monday in NYC. “Mommy’s not doing it, you’re not going to do it. And I tell my kids why. They know what the Biggest Loser is all about. They understand that for every cause, there’s a reaction, so I let them have an  afterschool treat if they’re going to soccer. Like ‘OK, this is good energy. You’re going to go running around all day or you’re going to go swimming in the pool, and then we can have calories that burn off.’ I talk to them about how it’s like fuel like Lightning McQueen.”

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She continues, “If you find ways to help your kids understand the common sense of it, it doesn’t become weird. I’m cautious of their nutrition and their weight, but also how it affects them mentally because I don’t want my kids to grow up with a complex about it either. If you really make it common sense – as Jillian Michaels says, ‘calories in, calories out. It’s a simple math equation.’ You can help them stay grounded about it, too.”

Going to dad to ask for sweets won’t help Ben and Megan.

“Luckily, Dave and I have a cohesive parenting unit,” Alison, who will celebrate their tenth anniversary July 8, says. “One of the things we always talk about is we’re a team, and we can’t let them play us off each other. We totally stick together. We’ve been successful at that so far, but we are definitely old-fashioned strict rules.”

Still, Ben and Megan have each other.

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“They get along great,” she says. “My son is 5, and my daughter is 1 ½, so – knock wood-- they get along famously. It’s so much fun to see them because he’s so proud of his little sister, and he’s so protective of her. It’s adorable. We were at the farmer’s market, and this little boy – like 2-years-old – was looking at Megan, and Dave says to me ‘look, that boy’s checking out Megan already’ – making a joke. And Ben covers her face with his hand, and says ‘don’t look at my sister!’ Dave’s like ‘good job. Protect your sister.’ He’s so loving and protective of her.”

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And Megan adores her big brother.

“She thinks he’s hilarious. She looks at him with total hero worship in her eyes, and laughs at every face he makes for her benefit. She’s always so excited to see him. At his preschool graduation, he was up there with all the other kids, and when she spotted him, she was like ‘Bah! Bah!’ for Ben, and it was so cute. So far they have a fabulous relationship, and I hope that continues because that’s something Dave and I both work at nurturing because we want them to have a very close loving bond.”

Here’s a pic of Alison and I:

Alison is on the entertainment council for Feeding America. For every tube of Crest Pro-Health Sensitive Shield toothpaste sold in the U.S. between July 1 and September 1, Crest will donate $1 to Feeding America (up to $100,000) to help feed more than 37 million Americans - including 14 million children and three million seniors - in local communities across the country.


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