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Veria Living's 'The Juice' Celebrates Females With 'Celebrity Spotlight: Strong Women Special': 'Devious Maids' Star Ana Ortiz, La Toya Jackson and More Highlighted

First Posted: Aug 07, 2014 05:20 PM EDT
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On Thursday, Veria Living network's live daily lifestyle talk show "The Juice" will celebrate the strength of the female spirit with a special episode titled "Celebrity Spotlight: Strong Women Special." As a lead-up to the inspirational episode, Dr. Evelyn Minaya, "The Juice" co-host, and Greg Tufaro, senior supervising producer, shared their views on the obstacles today's women face in finding strength.

In an interview with Latin Post, Tufaro described why the special is so important to "The Juice," which covers various topics including health and fitness, fashion, beauty, food and pop culture, especially in today's body-centric world.

"I believe that positive female role models are important for [young women] to see on a regular basis so they can be empowered to pursue their own dreams," he said. "Today's media is so consumed by celebrities taking their clothing off, but the women we have on our program don't have to do that to get their message across. They use their words to great impact, and that's something I want my daughters to know, and all women to know, they can do as well."

For Dr. Minaya, a strong woman is one who does not take the path of others, but rather creates their own through "self-respect."

"[A strong woman is] determined to do everything and set goals for herself," she said in an interview with Latin Post. "A strong woman thinks 'out of the box' and likes to challenge herself. She also likes to take on non-traditional roles and does not necessarily need a title to achieve that."

Various women taking alternate routes to strength will appear on Thursday's episode including Xosha Roquemore ("The Mindy Project"), Jackie Collins and Lisa Oz, host of Veria Living's "The Lisa Oz Show" and wife of Mehemet Oz, host of "The Dr. Oz Show."

"I truly believe that behind every strong man, there is a strong woman, and Lisa Oz is the epitome of that power," Tufaro said. "Together, she and Mehmet share a message of health and wellness that I find inspiring."

In addition, Zendaya, ("Shake It Up") and author Jackie Collins will be spotlighted, as well as a woman who grew up alongside males with very powerful shadows, La Toya Jackson.

"She's now in her 50s but has finally reached the point where she's choosing to be married and has gotten engaged on her own terms," Tufaro said of the sister of the late Michael Jackson.

As a doctor who is not only a female but also the daughter of Latino immigrants (her parents are from the Dominican Republic), Dr. Minaya understands the unique challenges that Latinas face in their journey to self-empowerment.

"I think being Latina affords us disadvantages and advantages," she explained. "The constant battle to succeed when you come from parents that might not have had the educational opportunities as you is very difficult. Being supported by your family and community because you want to do something different can also be challenging."

Two studys, one by Columbia University and another from the University of Southern California, have recently revealed that Latinas (and their male counterparts) are underrepresented in mainstream television and film. The USC report also found that Latinas "were more likely than females from all other races/ethnicities to be shown partially or fully naked on screen."

"All too often Latinas are not portrayed in a position of power, nor in a non-stereotypical role," Dr. Minaya said.

The mother of two adds that Latina-Americans are constantly battling to teach society about their various qualities, both unique ones and uniting ones.

"Thinking out of traditional roles and trying to convince people that we are different and yet very much alike has proven the most difficult obstacle," Dr. Minaya continued. "Because of these constant battles, I think it makes us stronger and even more determined to overcome."

Thursday's episode of "The Juice" will also re-air an interview with Ana Ortiz, star of Lifetime's "Devious Maids." Check out the special interview here.

The "Celebrity Spotlight: Strong Women Special" airs Thursday at 10 p.m. ET on Veria Living. "The Juice" airs every weekday at 1 p.m. and 10 p.m. ET.
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