As seen on TV

Dr. Oz gets frank about sex, weight loss and other topics

Anna Webber / Getty Images

Dr. Memhet Oz has a lot of ground to cover on season 5 of his ABC daytimer The Dr. Oz Show, starting up 4 p.m. Monday. Off camera, too.

The heart surgeon’s daughter, The Chew cohost Daphne Oz, is pregnant. It will be the first grandchild for Dr. Oz and his wife, Lisa. We’re thinking the mother to be is all set on the advice front. In her case, father really does know best.

We spoke to the good doctor and one of Oprah’s favorite people about a full range of topics (he seems to be an expert on everything).

What are the most common questions that you’re asked regarding health?

The most common public question I get is about weight loss. There’s just unbelievable interest in it. People just want to know more because they’re struggling with it every day. They see it in the mirror. They see it on the scale. The most common private question I get asked is about sex and intimacy. I do think that in America we are dealing with the reality that it’s not just about love; there also needs to be an element of lust to the process of sexiness. Sexless marriages generally aren’t as successful as they could be. The need to be physically intimate with somebody that you’re emotionally intimate with is something that we cannot ignore.

Why do you think much of the entertainment industry and the media are very open about sexual behavior, yet people have become less inclined to engage in actual relations?

It’s one of those basic biologic drivers that governs so much of our behavior, just like hunger. So it’s a good topic to have in the media because it immediately catches your attention. But to really change the sex that you’re having requires much more than obviously paying attention to someone else’s sexual exploits. It takes revisiting your self-image. It’s a huge investment of time. Any guy knows this: If you want to be intimate with the woman you love, you better start about 24 hours ahead of time and get going because you need to lay the groundwork and it’s like planting a field. But that said, worth the investment of effort. I always encourage women as well that even if you don’t feel like it, force yourself a little bit. Most of the time you’ll enjoy the fact that you did it and it’s very healthy for the relationship.

What exercise would you recommend for losing weight?

Although I’m personally I’m a huge fan of running, and I do a lot of activity that in my own life that involves running, like playing basketball and tennis and jogging, I don’t think it’s the best way to lose weight. If you really want to lose weight you want to build muscle mass and do it in a way where you can control your appetite. It also tends to be less problematic for your joints. I personally do a lot of yoga. Yoga may not seem like a weight-bearing exercise, but it absolutely is. You’ve got to lift your body weight and do it frequently. You actually end up in a wonderful scenario where you’re more flexible, relaxed, but yet you have bigger muscles. Most people who do yoga out there look better than most people who go running for that reason.

What about fasting to shed pounds?

Fasting has been an effective way for humans to deal with adversity for all known human history but it’s not the best way to lose weight. It’s the best way to reboot yourself, to detox. There are a lot of interesting aspects to how we think about the human body. A lot of folks are actually fasting now because they’re not eating food that has nutrients in it. They have adequate calorie counts but they don’t have the elements in their body that they need to grow brain cells, get stronger, look sexy, and be as sharp as they need to be.

Let’s talk celebs. You’ve had Snooki on your show a few times. She’s really changed her image.

I really enjoyed meeting her and watching her mature. I think Dancing with the Stars is a wonderful opportunity for her to be a role model. She went from being a naughty girl to a good girl. That stated, we’re all flawed.

Madeleine Marr

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