Nancy O'Dell - Access Hollywood

By Andrea Donsky on September 17, 2009

Nancy O'Dell, Betty's Battle, WWE, ALS, Yoplait, Calcium and Vitamin D, access hollywood, hollywood gossip, celebrity gossip, wwe smackdown, wwe raw, wwe picturesI love my job and I especially love to interview people who make my job easy. This week I spoke to Nancy O'Dell while she was on her way to work as co-host of the popular entertainment show - Access Hollywood. Smart and beautiful (inside and out), here's what she had to say:





Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): You’ve had a very successful broadcast career. You started out as an investigative reporter and then became the host of Access Hollywood. What made you decide to switch gears and go from reporting on crime to reporting on Hollywood?

Nancy O'Dell: I was working in Miami and anchoring the evening news. My fiancée at the time was living on the west coast so I wanted to move closer to him. I was under contract for NBC and they asked me if I wanted to work for a new entertainment show they were starting. I started out as the weekend anchor and then became the main anchor two years later. That was in 1996 and I’ve been there ever since.

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): Do you incorporate natural and organic products into your daily lifestyle?

Nancy O'Dell: I am a big believer in organics. All my fruits and vegetables are organic, I buy organic milk and cheese when I can and ever since I had my baby girl, I try to use organic cleaning products. My mom was diagnosed with ALS and there is some strong evidence that some cases of ALS appear to be linked to pesticides and chemical fertilizers.. In some cases it can be genetic, but that wasn’t the case for mom so I believe in maintaining a healthy lifestyle and that the products you put in your body are very important. That’s also one of the reasons I’m a huge fan about what I’m doing for Yoplait. After giving birth, I knew I wanted to be around a long time for my children, so taking care of myself and choosing the right foods to eat is very important to me.

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): This year you released the book Full of Life: Mom-to-Mom Tips I Wish Someone Had Told Me When I Was Pregnant. How did becoming a mom change you?

Nancy O'Dell: I think it puts everything into perspective. When I come home after a long day and see my baby girl smile, nothing else matters. It definitely put my priorities in order and I no longer stress about the ‘little things’ like not making it to an event. Before I had Ashby, people would tell me that the love I’d feel for her is like nothing one can ever describe. They were 100% right. It is the most unbelievable feeling! And to know I’m her protector...the motherly instinct comes on day one!

What I love about being a mom is that I feel like I’m living my life over again. I’m experiencing simple, little things through my children’s eyes. Everything becomes fun again because you’re watching them do things they love and they’re having a blast doing it.

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): At Naturally Savvy, we believe strongly in supplementing our diets with vitamin D. What inspired you to partner with Yoplait to promote the importance of calcium and vitamin D?

Nancy O'Dell: My biggest inspiration is my daughter. I want to make sure she gets her daily intake of calcium and vitamin D because it’s essential she gets those nutrients starting at a young age. Kids are tough to feed since they would rather be running around and snacking rather than eating a meal, so yogurt is a great way to give her what she needs.

My recent knee injury would be my second inspiration (I shredded my meniscus). Bone loss is a big issue for women so I try to get my calcium wherever I can. I was an athlete all my life and I wore my knees down. If you keep your bones healthy, the muscles are healthier too.

Being a mom you want to be around for your kids so my partnership with Yoplait is a natural fit for both myself and my daughter. Yogurt is convenient and easy to carry with me and it tastes great. The Whips! key lime pie is like a decadent dessert so I feel like I’m indulging but it’s actually healthy for me!

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): How do stay grounded living in L.A.?

Nancy O'Dell: Definitely my upbringing. I had amazing parents who taught me fantastic morals and values. Whenever I would do something I would always ask myself “would my parents approve of this?”. I believe what comes around goes around and if you live your life right then the right things will come back to you.

Another thing that keeps me grounded is also what makes me happy. My family is my number one priority and they make me very happy.

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): How do maintain balance in your life?

Nancy O'Dell: I try to live in the moment, which my husband has taught me. When I make a decision, I accept that that is the decision I have made and I try to live in that moment. It can be difficult at times, especially when it comes to the balance between work and family. I once interviewed Michele Obama and I asked her the same question while she was on the campaign trail. She told me that it’s one big guilt trip and she tries not to let it get to her, but sometimes it can be hard to strike that balance.

Naturally Savvy Guide (Andrea Donsky): I agree. Personally, I believe that the minute we become moms, the guilt sets in. I think the two words are synonymous. Speaking about moms, can you tell me about your charity ‘Betty’s Battle’?

Nancy O'Dell: I started it with the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) and launched it about a month ago (August 2009) with the help of the WWE. The MDA covers 40 plus diseases and ALS is one of them. ALS is a rapidly progressive fatal disease, usually within 3-5 years after diagnosis. When my mom was sick, MDA was there every step of the way for me and my family, so I pledged to them that I would do whatever I needed to do to help them. We started Betty’s Battle, which is specific to ALS, because there are no real prescription drugs that extend the life of someone with ALS for any great amount of time. MDA is doing research left and right to find a cure. I felt I had to do this and I hope that someday soon there is a cure so other families don’t have to go through what we did. My mom and I were best friends and she was such an amazing and beautiful human being. If I could be a quarter of the mother she was to me, then I will be an amazing mom.

By Andrea Donsky| September 17, 2009
Categories:  General

About the Author

Andrea Donsky

Andrea Donsky

Founder and Editor-in-Chief of She is passionate about living a natural and organic lifestyle and reading food labels. She is a mom to three beautiful children who love ground flaxseed & fish oil.

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