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DWTS Cheryl Burke's Top Tips for Healthy Snacking


Two-time Dancing With the Stars champion Cheryl Burke knows the importance of healthy snacking. As a dancer on the hit ABC series, she's always on the go and needs quick and easy yet healthy and satisfying snacks.

That's why she partnered with Sargento to unveil its new "Smart Snacking" tool and reiterate the importance of having wholesome choices in the workplace—good thing since according to a recent SHAPE survey, 93 percent of women snack at the office but almost 80 percent are unhappy with their options.

Burke sat down with us to gab about workout motivation, sticking to a diet, DWTS (the sixteenth season starts February 25), and more!

SHAPE: Our readers would love to know what you do besides dancing to stay in shape.
Cheryl Burke (CB): I love Jazzercise! It's a fun way to dance by yourself in your own living room, and you can burn so many calories. I also have a treadmill, so if I can't get to a class, I can run a few miles a day, and I do hot yoga.

SHAPE: If we looked on your iPod, what would we find on your workout playlist?
CB: Well, let me see! [Digs iPod out of purse and starts scrolling through] I've definitely got The Black Eyed Peas, Rihanna, and DJ Afrojack. I've also been really into house music lately.

RELATED: Envy Burke's body? Perform this dance-inspired exercise to tone your thighs.

SHAPE: What advice do you have for sticking to a fitness routine?
CB: Think about your favorite activity and find a way to fit it into your workout—that way you’ll stay motivated to be active and enjoy your workout. For me, I started dancing when I was four, and it still gets my heart rate up.

SHAPE: What's been your favorite moment from DWTS?
CB: I've been on the show for fifteen seasons, and it's been crazy! People always ask me, “Aren't you tired of being on it?” But I'm really not because every partner brings in something new. I think my favorite part was the all-stars season last season. It was nice to see everyone back in the ballroom.

SHAPE: How would you sum up your healthy living philosophy?
CB: To me, it's all about eating clean and making sure that you constantly move your body. I always make sure I break a sweat, every day.

SHAPE: What would you say is the best advice someone's ever given you about healthy living?
CB: It's really important to listen to your body. If your body is craving something and you want it, then have it. Too many people put themselves on really strict diets or ban the foods they want to eat and end up breaking their diets.

RELATED: When you're having an "off" diet day, keep seeing results with these 22 ways to stay motivated to lose weight.

SHAPE: So then what are some of your favorite healthy snacks?
CB: Cheese! I'm always on the go, so I have Sargento since it's a great high-quality, flavorful protein and they have low-calorie options.

SHAPE: What about unhealthy foods?
CB: I am a carbs girl and I love salt. If I had a cheat day, I'd have Mexican food, for sure, but I try to make smart choices: When I crave something salty, I might have tuna, and if I crave something sweet, I'll have something like a banana.

SHAPE: What if this was your last day on earth? What would you eat if calories and carbs didn't matter?
CB: I would eat a Thanksgiving dinner: stuffing, mashed potatoes, turkey, everything.

SHAPE: Have there ever been any times when you've looked back at photos of yourself and saw that you were wearing or doing something that was totally cringe-worthy?
CB: When I first moved to L.A., I didn't even know what a red carpet was. When I did my first red carpet appearance, I was wearing this horrible fake fur vest and my hair was super short. I had no style sense whatsoever. I think that was the moment after the move that I was like, “I have no idea what I'm doing!”


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