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- Australian actress, writer, producer
Rebel Wilson has made headlines for her over 70-pound weight loss as a result of her self-proclaimed "year of health" in 2020. But the actress is now sharing that not everybody was on board with her plans to undergo a transformation.
"I got a lot of pushback from my own team actually here in Hollywood when I said, 'OK I'm gonna do this year of health. I feel like I'm really gonna physically transform and change my life.' And they were like, 'Why? Why would you want to do that?'" Wilson recalled during an interview with BBC. "Because I was earning millions of dollars being the funny fat girl and being that person."
Her breakthrough role as "Fat Amy" in the 2011 film Pitch Perfect solidified just how connected Wilson's appearance was to her fame. And although the role led her to be recognized as one of Hollywood's top comedy actresses, she explained to BBC that she knew there were aspects of her health — namely, her relationship with food — that needed to be addressed.
"I was still very confident being bigger and you know loved myself. I would rock a red carpet and was probably double the size and sometimes triple the weight of other actresses, but like I still felt confident in that," she explained. "But I knew deep down inside some of the emotional eating behaviors I was doing was not healthy. Like I did not need a tub of ice cream every night... That was me, kind of numbing emotions using food, which wasn't the healthiest thing."
Wilson went on to say that eating became her mechanism for "dealing with not being a natural performer and having to perform almost every day. That pressure and that internal stress to be able to perform like that." She's even previously described herself as "very introverted," telling Daily Telegraph's Stellar magazine that she would "reward myself with a block of chocolate" to cope with the attention she was receiving.
Since losing weight, however, that attention hasn't diminished. "It's fascinating," she told BBC of the heightened reaction to her new look. "Why are people so obsessed with it? With women, in particular, about their looks. I know what it’s like to be a woman who was essentially invisible to most people because of not being seen as traditionally beautiful or whatever. It's crazy to try to fit that. It's just better to be the healthiest version."
As for what being healthy means to her, Wilson has talked about being diagnosed with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) — a hormonal disorder that can cause menstrual irregularity, excess hair growth, acne and obesity — and how that diagnosis was part of the reason that she made lifestyle changes.
"You can't share everything, especially on social media. But what I try to do is share just enough that hopefully, people can understand some of the struggles I've been through," she said of her decision to be open about the diagnosis. "The reason why I share it is to hopefully help people."
She's also been focused on the potential of starting a family, which she admittedly hadn't considered during the height of her career.
"I was the classic example of a career woman who went out into the world, didn’t even think about kids and then suddenly in your mid-thirties it's like, 'Oh, hang on. Do I want that as an option? And then if I do, what do I need to do?'" she explained.
And while her journey with fertility has been a difficult one, the actress remains open-minded about what the future might hold.
"I'm still trying on the fertility journey even though it is emotional and you get hopeful and then your hopes are dashed. So I feel for any woman going through it," she said. "It could be great if I had my own children, but I don’t know whether that's gonna happen. So I’m trying not to have any expectations set on an outcome. Just that I'm the healthiest I can be, I'm gonna try and what will happen will happen."
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