Dr. Oz Talks to Oprah About Food, Family and What It Really Means to Be Healthy
Dr. Oz: Oh, I'm a profoundly flawed person. For one thing, I've been accused of joyless eating.
Oprah: I wouldn't know what that is.
Dr. Oz: Frank Bruni, who used to be the restaurant critic for The New York Times, once wrote that I was the most joyless eater he'd ever seen.
Oprah: Were you eating jicama when he wrote that? 'Cause I think jicama is one joyless food.
Dr. Oz: Jicama has no joy.
Oprah: When I got to the photo shoot today and walked into my dressing room, there was a plate of jicama. I thought, Why would I ever want to eat that? They got our dressing rooms mixed up. So what do you eat on a given day?
Dr. Oz: Well, when Frank accused me of being joyless, I was eating walnuts soaked in water. I grew up partly in Istanbul, where my grandfather had walnut trees. I'd crack open the walnuts on the pavement and eat the moist nuts. But when you buy walnuts in a store, they're dried out and have a little bitterness. If you soak them in water, that bitterness goes away.
Oprah: I get mine at Whole Foods and they're perfectly fine unsoaked! Walnuts soaked in water—that is two degrees below joyless. What else do you eat?
Dr. Oz: For breakfast I usually have blueberries with Greek yogurt, which I love. Or I'll have steel-cut oatmeal with flaxseed on it.
Oprah: Love that. What about lunch?
Dr. Oz: I often get an oily fish. I love salmon, but black bass is to die for. The reason I like it more than salmon is that so much of the salmon you get on the East Coast is farm raised. They feed the fish pellets to get their color right. There's a color wheel, and the farmer picks the color he wants.
Oprah: Really? What an education.
Dr. Oz: You know, I actually went to Alaska last summer and caught wild salmon with my hands, which apparently is illegal.
Oprah: What are they going to do to you?
Dr. Oz: Too late now!
Oprah: You do get around, though, don't you? I know for sure that you're popular in Turkey. I was there last summer, and I found myself using your name to open doors. I'm like, "I know Dr. Oz. May I have a seat by the water, please?"
Dr. Oz: Oh, you're pretty popular in Turkey yourself. And the Arab world.
Oprah: It always shocked me that the Oprah show was popular in places like Iran and Saudi Arabia. But speaking of shows, tell me what having yours has meant for your trajectory. Last night I came home from work at 11—we've been going all out at OWN—and Stedman said, "We're back to the old days." Because when I first started my show, I used to come home at 10, 11 o'clock at night. I had only four producers, I was helping them book, we were arranging for the limo services, we were doing it all. And it changes your personal relationships and your availability to do things. Have you found that?
Dr. Oz: It takes up your life. That's the big sacrifice. You don't have balance.
Oprah: Now do you understand?
Dr. Oz: Yes. When you said you were stopping your show after 25 years, and everyone said, "How can she do that, she's at the top of her game!"—I knew exactly what you were talking about.
Oprah: And actually, the show is the easiest thing you do all day, because you've got a couple hundred people in the audience cheering you on.
Dr. Oz: Yes. It's all choreographed, you've done your homework, your producers have made the most spectacular graphics—that's the easy part. The hard part is 10 o'clock at night, when you want to go home. That's what happened Thursday when we were doing a detox diet. I didn't like it, and I said, "I'm not going to do this tomorrow on the show." But then the turmoil, the emotions—you don't want people to feel insulted after they worked their tails off. But it just wasn't right.
Next: Oprah's advice for Dr. Oz on setting boundaries