Skip to content

Denise Richards, 51, Looks Incredible and Here's How

How the former Bond girl looks great and stays healthy. 

Denise Richards started her career as a model and shot to fame when she turned to acting, wowing fans with performances in films Starship Troopers, Wild Things and The World Is Not Enough. The 51-year-old has since done everything from reality TV to writing a memoir titled The Real Girl Next Door and continues to take on projects. The mother of three looks fantastic and here's how she does it.


She Does Pilates

Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

In an interview with Self, Richards said, "I am very active. I found what works for my body — everyone's body is different and I think it's best to find what works for you. For me it's Pilates and dance." The National Library of Medicine states, "A recent study sought to determine the effect of a Pilates training program on arm-trunk posture, strength, flexibility and biomechanical patterns. Nineteen subjects (9 controls, 10 experimental) were assessed twice, 12 weeks apart, during which the experimental group performed Pilates training for two 1-h sessions per week. The results indicated that the Pilates training program was effective in improving abdominal strength and upper spine posture, as well as in stabilizing core posture when shoulder flexion movements were performed. Since deficits in these functional aspects have previously been associated with symptoms in the neck-shoulder region, these results support the use of Pilates in the prevention of neck-shoulder disorders."


She Loves Animals

Scroll through Richard's Instagram page and you'll see countless pics of cute pooches. Being around pets boosts your mood and is healthy for you in several ways, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. "There are many health benefits of owning a pet. They can increase opportunities to exercise, get outside, and socialize. Regular walking or playing with pets can decrease blood pressure, cholesterol levels, and triglyceride levels.  Pets can help manage loneliness and depression by giving us companionship. Most households in the United States have at least one pet."


She Overcame a Messy Public Divorce

Steve Granitz/WireImage

Richards famously went through a bad public divorce with ex-husband Charlie Sheen, which she wrote about in her memoir. She told Self, "I share a lot in my memoir from when I was a child until now. As far as my marriage, I do share the good memories but also get into my divorce. Not the details, more the feelings. Many women experience divorce and it is heartbreaking to go through. I'm hoping anyone who has gone through what I did will have hope that it does get better." The National Library of Medicine states, "The experience of separation or divorce confers risk for poor health outcomes, including a 23% higher mortality rate. However, most people cope well and are resilient after their marriage or long-term relationship ends. Despite the fact that resilience is the most common response, a small percentage of people (approximately 10–15%) struggle quite substantially, and it appears that the overall elevated adverse health risks are driven by the poor functioning of this group. Several candidate mechanisms and novel (ambulatory) assessment techniques are discussed that may elucidate the poor outcomes among people who adapt poorly to separation."


She Eats Smalls Meals Throughout the Day

Europa Press/Getty Images

Richards revealed to Self her diet tricks that work for her and cutting out large meals is one way she stays in shape. " I have lots of little meals; it's best for me. I found eating three big meals I felt too full and got tired especially after lunch." According to UCLA Health, "The premise behind eating smaller and more frequent meals is the control of blood sugar, also called blood glucose. This refers to the glucose, a type of sugar that is extracted from the food we eat. When digestion is complete, glucose is carried by the bloodstream and throughout the body to supply our cells and organs with energy. When blood glucose levels drop, hunger and cravings spike. By eating six small meals per day, the thinking goes, you're ensuring that blood glucose is available at all times. By controlling the trigger for cravings, you'll eat less and won't be as likely to give in to the siren song of that bag of chips or chocolate bar."


She Has a Cheat Day Every Now and Then


While Richards eats clean healthy meals consistently, she doesn't completely eliminate everything from her diet. She told Self, "My cheat food is ice cream, but I found these tiny snack-size cones that Haagen-Dazs came out with." Northwestern Medicine states, "Research shows that after a cheat meal, the body increases its metabolism, causing you to burn calories faster. This is caused by increased levels of leptin, a hormone secreted by fat cells and responsible for maintaining energy balance in the body. After eating a larger meal than usual, your body increases leptin production by as much as 30 percent for up to 24 hours."

Heather Newgen
Heather Newgen has two decades of experience reporting and writing about health, fitness, entertainment and travel. Heather currently freelances for several publications. Read more
Filed Under