Padma Lakshmi Admits There Was a Time When She Didn't Know the Paternity of Her Daughter

"Men do it all the time," she explained on the Today show

By Francesca Bacardi Mar 08, 2016 2:50 PMTags

Padma Lakshmi is not ashamed about her past.

The Top Chef host opened up about her past relationships, her marriage and her health to Matt Lauer on the Today show Tuesday morning and was completely candid about her past mistakes—but she wouldn't call them that. Lakshmi, who was married to Salman Rushdie for only three years, maintained that it was "a wonderful relationship."

"Like any marriage it had its ups and downs," she explained," and I think also we were dealing with another issue that we didn't know about at the time: endometriosis."

The couple spent eight years together, but ultimately Lakshmi felt that she needed focus on herself before she could give her all to somebody else. As a result, her marriage started to fall apart.

"At the time I really needed to take care of my health, and I couldn't take care of my health and get well and also take care of my marriage," she admitted. "I did the best I could."

She was quick to give Rushdie credit, too.


"By the way I think Salman did the best he could," she added. "There was a lot of love there. It just didn't work out."

After splitting up with her then-husband, Lakshmi was single for a while before getting into a relationship with two different men. While it was a choice that might have made some heads turn, she didn't care—and still doesn't.

"It probably wasn't the best choice, but it was the choice I made at the time," she said candidly. "I didn't want to be in a serious relationship. I was still really hurting from my divorce."

She continued, "I probably shouldn't have been with anybody and just taken the time I needed for myself but I was presented with two very different, very interesting men and men do it all the time. I chose to do it. I was open with the men involved."

Lakshmi became pregnant in 2009 and admitted in her new memoir, Love, Loss and What We Ate, that she didn't know which of the two men was the father. After DNA testing and a custody battle, her ex, Adam Dell, turned out to be the father of their daughter, Krishna Thea Lakshmi-Dell.

"I'm going to own my history," she said. "That's what I did."

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