The reason Sandra Lee 'gained weight on purpose'

For most women, weight gain is unfortunately still a signal that something is going wrong in our lives. But with each new inspiring campaign surrounding body positivity and loving yourself and the skin you're in, comes the knowledge that weight gain isn't always necessarily a bad thing. In certain instances, it can even be a sign of good health, and of repairing our bodies from the inside out.

Take celebrity chef Sandra Lee, whose body has endured more than its fair share of beatings thanks to her battle with breast cancer, which ultimately culminated in a double mastectomy. When she started to gain weight, it was a moment of celebration that provided clarity of purpose for Lee. She wasn't freaking out about her body changing; she was glad for it. And, through finding the strength to beat cancer and focus on her body's indomitability, the lifestyle expert learned an important lesson about finding beauty in even the harshest situations.

Sandra Lee is focused on strength rather than looks

The strain of dealing with breast cancer and recovering from the subsequent surgeries initially led to weight loss for Lee, as it does with many others. However, as she told Today proudly, putting the pounds back on was of great importance to her. "I gained weight on purpose. I actually worked at it with my doctor as I was borderline underweight," she explained of her 10 pound gain. In fact, Lee admitted she prefers having a little meat on her bones, particularly since she discovered through working out that muscle weighs more than fat anyway.

Lee further explained that looks aren't everything, rather, "My well-being is definitely focused on the little moments in everyday life." She maintains the importance of loving yourself above all else. "Our bodies are a gift and our lives are a gift and they're both to be cherished every single day. If you are not happy and healthy, nothing in your life will be as happy or healthy as it can be," she reasoned.

For Sandra Lee, it's all about positivity

She might be sticking to her healthier habits in quarantine, eating plenty of lean protein and drinking lots of water, but Lee reassured those who may have gained a few pounds in the current crisis to relax, because there's more to life than the numbers on the scale. "Enjoy it. You can get the weight off soon enough — life is about being happy every single day and if eating a little more or even a little naughty makes you happy, then do it!" she argued.

And for those worried about what to make during quarantine, Lee told The New York Times, it's a simply a case of figuring out, "How to do with what you have and how to make it the best you can. You have to see what's there, not what's not there." Sounds like a good philosophy for life, too, and one the cook herself would approve of.