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13 Celebs Who Speak Openly About Eating Disorders

In honor of Eating Disorder Awareness Week, we honor the stars who've spoken openly about the stigmatized subject of eating disorders, fought to get healthy and get rid of the taboo of talking about recovery

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Demi Lovato

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 15: Recording artist Demi Lovato attends The 58th GRAMMY Awards at Staples Center on February 15,
John Shearer/WireImage

Of all the young pop starlets it's hard to think of one who has been as vocal about her eating disorder than Demi Lovato. She famously stated in her MTV documentary:

"When I was four years old and I remember looking in the mirror and thinking I was fat. I was constantly feeling guilty about my weight...Even when I did lose 20 pounds when I turned 12 because I stopped eating, it’s never enough. It was an obsession of the mind. Recovery doesn’t have a day off ... I don’t think there is a finish line I just think you keep going."

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Kesha on Facebook

Kesha checked herself into a rehabilitation clinic to confront her bulimia in 2014. She told Elle UK about the experience:

"I felt like part of my job was to be as skinny as possible and, to make that happen, I had been abusing my body. I just wasn't giving it the energy it needed to keep me healthy and strong. The music industry has set unrealistic expectations for what a body is supposed to look like, and I started becoming overly critical of my own body because of that. I felt like people were always lurking, trying to take pictures of me with the intention of putting them up online or printing them in magazines and making me look terrible. I became scared to go in public, or even use the Internet. I may have been paranoid but I also saw and heard enough hateful things to fuel that paranoia."

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Russell Brand

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 06: Russell Brand attends the Pride of Britain awards at The Grosvenor House Hotel on October 6, 20
Mike Marsland/WireImage

Eating disorders are not only experienced by women. Actor Russell Brand told the Daily Mail:

"I was bulimic when I was 14. I had problems with food and self-harming...my feeling about my childhood was that it was lonely and difficult." 

He added that his bulimia resurfaced when he went to rehab: "It was clearly about getting out of myself and isolation. Feeling inadequate and unpleasant."

According to the article, he now battles his ED with a healthy diet and frequent exercise.

4 / 13

Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga arrives on the red carpet for the 88th Oscars on February 28, 2016 in Hollywood, California. / AFP / JEAN BAPTISTE

Lady Gaga suffered from bulimia in high school. She said:

"I used to throw up all the time in high school. So I’m not that confident. I wanted to be a skinny little ballerina, but I was a voluptuous little Italian girl whose dad had meatballs on the table every night. I used to come home and say, 'Dad, why do you always give us this food? I need to be thin.' And he'd say, 'Eat your spaghetti.'"

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Hilary Duff

NEW YORK, NY - MARCH 31: Hilary Duff attends the after party for the premiere of TV Land's "Younger" at Chef's Club on March
Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images

Hilary Duff spoke about her experiences with eating disorders to Perez Hilton after hitting 100 pounds in 2005 (down from 130 in 2003.) She told the publication:

"I got pretty skinny when I was between 17 and 19. I don't know what exactly made me get on that kick, but at the time I was starting to become aware of what people said about me and how I looked in pictures. I literally ate nothing but steamed vegetables and broiled or grilled chicken, with nothing else. I was touring at the time, traveling everywhere, and I felt so run down. Not giving your body enough of what it needs is really dangerous. I regret it because I don't think I was happy then."

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Caleb Followill (Kings of Leon)

LOS ANGELES, CA - MARCH 24: Caleb Followill of The Kings of Leon performs At The Red Bull Sound Space At KROQ on March 24, 20
Gabriel Olsen/WireImage

Kings of Leon frontman Caleb Followill suffered from anorexia as a teen. He told Q Magazine he became obsessed with exercise...to an unhealthy amount:

“I always thought I wasn't good enough." He said he'd do "anything to keep my hands and mouth busy without eating."

7 / 13

Jessica Alba

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 27: Jessica Alba attends Who What Wear x Target launch party at ArtBeam on January 27, 2016 in New Yor
Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for Target

"A lot of girls have eating disorders, and I did too," Alba told Glamour. "I got obsessed with it. When I went from a girl's body to a woman's body with natural fat in places, I freaked out." Alba added that "with treatment I have now conquered the fear that drove me to become dangerously thin."

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Lindsay Lohan

Actress Lindsay Lohan attends the White House Correspondents Association Dinner in Washington, DC, April 28, 2012. The annual

Lindsay Lohan very famously battled bulimia in the mid-00s, telling Vanity Fair:

"I was sick, and I was scared too. I had people sit me down and say, ‘You’re going to die if you don’t take of yourself.'"

9 / 13

Lucy Hale

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - APRIL 07: Actress Lucy Hale attends the 2016 Freeform Upfront at Spring Studios on April 7, 2016 in New
Mike Pont/WireImage

Pretty Little Liars star Lucy Hale admitted to suffering from an eating disorder in the past in an in-depth interview with Cosmopolitan:

"I've never really talked about this, but I would go days without eating. Or maybe I'd have some fruit, and then go to the gym for three hours. I knew I had a problem...it was a gradual process, but I changed myself." 

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Ashlee Simpson

Ashlee Simpson struggled with an eating disorder a while ago. It became extreme quickly: At her worst point, she weighed 70 pounds. She talked to Cosmo about it:

"I was around a lot of girls with eating disorders, and I actually had a minor one myself. My parents stepped in and made me eat. (It) was about six months of not eating too much at all."

She has since learned to love her body:

"I think I have good curves, and they're womanly. I hate it when girls lose their curves...I have amazing boobs. I do, I know it. They're not too big, not too small. They're just perfect."

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Jane Fonda

LOS ANGELES, CA - MAY 01: Actress Jane Fonda attends Netflix Original Series "Grace & Frankie" season 2 premiere at Harmony G
Vincent Sandoval/FilmMagic

Jane Fonda is a bit older than the other celebrities on this list, telling Harper's Bazaar that a vintage culture of misogyny lead to her bulimia:

"I was raised in the '50s. I was taught by my father [actor Henry Fonda] that how I looked was all that mattered, frankly. He sent messages to me that fathers should not send: Unless you look perfect, you're not going to be loved...I had a career, I was winning awards, I was supporting nonprofits, I had a family. I had to make a choice: I live or I die."

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Christina Ricci

LOS ANGELES, CA - JANUARY 29: Christina Ricci arrives at Entertainment Weekly's celebration honoring the 2016 SAG Awards nomi
Michael Tran/FilmMagic

The actress told Marie Claire UK:

"Somebody actually found out about it and outed [me] while I was recovering [from an eating disorder]. It was a horrifying thing to do to a 14-year-old trying to cope with a devastating illness. And, out of rage, I vowed that no one would ever be able to out me for a secret again. So I was going to be completely honest in the rest of my life. I don't want to be hurt in that way again."

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RIDGEWOOD, NJ - OCTOBER 13: Nicole "Snooki" Polizzi Signs Copies Of Her New Book "Strong Is The New Sexy"  at Bookends Bookst
Dave Kotinsky/Getty Images

Jersey Shore star Snooki dealt with a really severe eating disorder as a teenager:

"In high school, I really wouldn’t eat. It got so crazy that I would only eat a cracker or a cucumber a day and I would feel full. I had an eating disorder and it got really, really bad. There were these little girls coming up, like freshmen, who were literally, like, 70 pounds. And I was, like, my spot as a flier is going to get taken away. So I ended up starving myself...I started eating one salad a day, and then it became, like, one cracker a day, and then it became just one grape a day. And then...just not eating at all for three days. It was a really, really bad time for me."

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