Busy Philipps Hates “Hangryness”—for an Even More Lovable Reason Than You Think

Updated: Aug. 23, 2023

The recently single actress, 44, who's become known for her gym routine, reveals her secret motivation as she works to raise awareness about hunger in America.

With a name like Busy Philipps, it’s not tough to guess the pace of life for this actress, activist, and mom of two. Earlier this year Philipps, who is also the New York Times bestselling author of the 2018 book, This Will Only Hurt a Little, finished filming the movie Mean Girls: The Musical, where she stars as Mrs. George.

With the writers’ and actors’ strike ongoing, she’s been focusing on her podcast, “Busy Philipps Is Doing Her Best,” staying consistent with her workouts, and spending time on other projects she cares about—like partnering with Two Good Yogurt to launch a food insecurity awareness campaign in time for September Hunger Action Month.

Two Good says that with 34 million Americans facing food insecurity, they will donate $1 (up to $100,000) to the nonprofits City Harvest and We Don’t Waste every time someone buys a Two Good product or uses the hashtag #GetHangryForGood. (To date, the company says they have donated 53 million meals to increase food accessibility for people in need.)

In her typical comedic style, Busy Philipps talked with The Healthy @Reader’s Digest about why nothing is worse than being hangry (hungry + angry, for the uniformed)…and why nothing is better than being a single mom who rocks wellness in her forties.

Busy Philipps on the importance of access to healthy food

The Healthy @Readers Digest: Tell me about your new campaign to raise awareness about food insecurity in the US.

Busy Philipps: I’m talking about group hangryness. A thing that became very clear to me through a lot of work that I’ve done with different organizations, is just how many people food insecurity affects. It’s truly staggering when you look at the numbers, which is why Two Good wanted to do this “Get Hangry For Good” campaign to benefit City Harvest and We Don’t Waste.

City Harvest is a place that I personally have volunteered at and I love the work that they do because they’re so committed to not just battling food insecurity, but also battling food waste so that people don’t have to deal with hangryness. It’s just crazy to me, when you see the effect that it has on everything that you do when your blood sugar drops when you haven’t eaten in a while. It’s unnecessary because we have enough food in this country and we should be able to figure it out.

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The Healthy: What does nutrition look like for your family?

Busy Philipps: I mean, we try to have a lot of balance. We are not a no-sugar household. We’re not all one thing. But we try to have a good balance and we try to talk about things that are good for your body.

A long time ago, we realized that my older daughter really can’t eat first thing in the morning. So, I know there are just a lot of outdated ideas about eating and nutrition and food. I have personally had to break myself of so much diet culture over the years. So, part of that is really about listening to your body so you don’t get to the place where you’re hangry.

The Healthy: Your workout videos and photos became famous on social media. What was that like when you realized that you were gaining such a following and inspiring people?

Busy Philipps: When I started doing it, I was just holding myself accountable, and was proud of myself for finally finding a way that my body enjoyed moving that didn’t feel like torture, because I had spent so much of my life truly hating working out. So, when I found LEKFIT, which is the mini trampoline workout that I still do to this day, I was just so excited about it, because I loved it so much and it made me feel so great.

The Healthy: I also read that you found it helpful for mental health, which I really relate to. How does working out help you mentally?

Busy Philipps: I follow this girl on TikTok, Elyse Myers. She posted this great thing the other day that I loved, that was like, “I finally realized that maybe self-care is doing something that in the moment I don’t maybe want to do, but it’s for my future self.”

The Healthy: Oh, I like that.

Busy Philipps: I thought it was a really perfect encapsulation of what even my workout that I love does for me, because when I’ve had moments of a lot of anxiety or even depression or not feeling great, or PMS or whatever, and I don’t feel like doing the workout. I have to remember that there’s the moment after, where I’m so grateful that I showed up, and so grateful that I did it. Sometimes I just make a deal with myself: Just go and start it. If you hate it, if you’re still feeling like this, you can leave.

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The Healthy: What is one self-care ritual that you refuse to skip?

Busy Philipps: I mean, I’m really into washing my face. I have been a skincare routine girl since I was pre-teen, and it’s so cute because my older daughter is also just a skincare queen. I just see my influence in her nightly routine, and I love it.

The Healthy: We saw your recent Instagram post at a Taylor Swift concert in your, quote, “Hot single mom era.” How are you finding this time in your life right now?

Busy Philipps: I mean, hot single mom with zero dates. But that’s OK. I’m happy to just be a hot single mom.