Padma Lakshmi’s Daughter Is Her Pride and Joy

Leila Kozma - Author

May 19 2023, Updated 11:57 a.m. ET

Padma Lakshmi and her daughter in Paris
Source: Instagram

Actor, professional foodie, and activist Padma Lakshmi needs no introduction.

The Emmy nominee and Top Chef host is widely known for her work and her philanthropy, but at home, she's mom to daughter Krishna.

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The Taste the Nation creator shares Krishna with her ex Adam Dell. Below, we take a look at Padma's road to becoming a mom, and her life with her daughter.

(l-r): Padma Lakshmi and her daughter, Krishna Thea Lakshmi-Dell embracing one another at the 'Taste of a Nation' red-carpet event.
Source: Getty Images
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Padma Lakshmi’s daughter, Krishna, is “the real star in the family.”

Padma's marriage with Booker Prize–winning author Salman Rushdie came to a bitter end in 2007.

The same year, she started dating two men, Adam R. Dell and Theodore J. Forstmann. But things took a new turn when Padma gave birth to her daughter, Krishna Thea Lakshmi-Dell, in February 2010.

As a previous article by the New York Post claims, Padma learned that Adam was the father of the baby during the pregnancy, but she wanted to start a family with Teddy instead.

The plan didn't bode all that well with Adam, who swiftly sought to rectify the not-so-advantageous predicament.

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Adam hit Padma with a court case in January 2011. In an explosive document, he raised allegations about the nature of their relationship — accusing her of using unkind language to describe him, among others — while also demanding child custody and for Krishna's last name to be changed to Dell. 

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Reportedly, Padma once called Adam "unambitious" and his career "uninteresting," while she also described his friends as "unmemorable." What's more, she chose Krishna's second name, Thea, because she supposedly wanted to pay homage to Teddy.

In 2021, Padma admitted on People’s Me Becoming Mom podcast that the public paternity battle between her, Adam, and Teddy was “mortifying” to witness in the press. She described the brouhaha as “icky” due to the media’s “obsession” with her daughter’s father.

Padma lovingly refers to he daughter Krishna as "Littlehands" on social media.

However, away from the chaos, Padma said Krishna, whom she often refers to as “Littlehands” on social media, has been “the real star in the family" since she gave birth to her.

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“I’m a fan of my daughter’s creativity,” Padma told Us Weekly in 2020. “She is wildly entertaining and funny and a great singer. … Krishna’s hysterical. I have to resist the temptation to put her on my social media all the time because I don’t think that’s right, but it’s hard because she’s really, genuinely funny!”

Adam gained recognition as Krishna's father in the end.

It's understood that Padma and Adam settled the case out of court in the spring of 2012. As part of the agreement, Adam's last name was added to Krishna's name. Adam was able to strike up a more reasonable compromise when it came to visitation rights as well, earning the opportunity to spend more time with his daughter. Padma likely continued to have a say in the most important matters, however.

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"Padma basically said it was fine to add his name, but she retains all decision-making power, which is really what matters most to her," a source told People at the time. 

Padma and Adam rekindled their romance in 2017, but split in 2021.

padma lakshmi adam dell
Source: Getty Images

Padma Lakshmi and Adam Dell in 2017.

Padma and Adam sparked dating rumors once again in January 2017, when they attended the Women's March on Washington together.

Eager to take things slow and gradually rebuild their relationship, the couple stayed away from the spotlight for the most part. Padma shared the photograph she took of Adam at the Women's March on Washington a year later, on Valentine's Day in 2018 — which aroused some suspicion about their relationship status.

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Although they tend to be secretive about their private life, they did make headlines on a few occasions in the course of the past few years.

In the spring of 2019, a leisurely walk around Manhattan's SoHo neighborhood gave way to engagement rumors — as Padma was photographed with a sizeable sparkler on her left-hand ring finger. It's understood that Padma and Adam spent the COVID-19 lockdown period together as well. However, the two reportedly split by early 2021.

Is Padma pregnant again?

There is no evidence to suggest that Padma is currently expecting, but she has certainly been the subject of pregnancy rumors before. In fact, the Bravolebrity took to Instagram in 2016 to shut down any speculation after she posted a picture of her in a bikini while vacationing with Krishna in Tulum, Mexico.

“No I am not pregnant, I just like tacos, and burritos and enchiladas...!!!” Padma clarified in her post.

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The host has also previously shared why she’s likely not ready to carry another baby after her “very scary” pregnancy with Krishna. During her 2021 Me Becoming Mom podcast interview, Padma said she was diagnosed with placenta previa during her pregnancy, which “is a condition where the placenta lies low in the uterus and partially or completely covers the cervix,” per American Pregnancy Association.

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Padma said her condition left her bedridden, and she could only take a shower “every three days” and “go to the bathroom twice a day.” She also shared that she was diagnosed with endometriosis at age 36, which made conceiving her daughter naturally “very difficult, if not impossible.” Still, Padma persevered because she knew she wanted to have a baby one day.

“That put the issue very front and center in my mind, and I was devastated,” she revealed of her diagnosis. “I really didn’t know if I was going to be able to have children, and I knew I wanted to have children.”

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