Why Zoe Saldana doesn't believe in diets

PHOTO: Actor Zoe Saldana poses for a portrait while promoting Marvel Studios "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2." in West Hollywood, Calif., April 20, 2017. PlayDanny Moloshok/Reuters
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Zoe Saldana has given up on dieting.

"I try not to deprive my body of anything because the moment I have just salads and protein for a few days, I crave carbs. But when I eat everything in balance, I think less about food and more about everything else. It’s about eating to live, not living to eat," the 38-year-old actress told the June issue of Shape.

The "Guardians of the Galaxy" star focuses instead on eating clean.

"It’s not that I like to eat superlight, just superclean. I like food that is fresh," she said. "I don’t go for things that come in a can -- and I’m losing trust in things that come in plastic."

She and her husband, Italian artist Marco Perego, like to prepare their own meals, choosing to eat more vegetables and less meat.

"My husband and I have been learning to cook with Asian spices, like turmeric, and ginger, and we’re having a blast," she said.

Diagnosed with Hashimoto’s thyroiditis in 2012, Saldana is motivated to eat clean in order to stay healthy.

"I know I’ve become a very boring person to take to dinner, but I’d rather be that way than deal with health issues," said the actress, who is gluten- and dairy-free, just like the rest of the family. "When you have an autoimmune condition, you have to stay away from foods that cause inflammation."

The busy mom of three boys -- twins Cy and Bowie, 2, and Zen, who she welcomed in February -- doesn't always have time to exercise either.

"I can’t work out regularly, so I compensate by eating a lot healthier than I might otherwise," she said. "Once you have relatively healthy eating habits, your workout can become playing with your kids, strolling around the neighborhood, playing airplane, or just changing diapers."

After the birth of her twins, Saldana opened about the physical challenges of getting back into shape. Not only did the actress gain 70 pounds, but Saldana explained on Facebook that "everything from my thyroid to my platelets crashed" after giving birth.