Public Scrutiny and Self-Blame
In a candid interview with People, former talk show host Oprah Winfrey spoke about the decades-long gossip and public scrutiny surrounding her weight. She revealed that she often internalized the criticism, feeling sad and hurt by the remarks. “I swallowed the shame. I accepted that it was my fault,” Winfrey shared. For 25 years, she faced relentless mockery, blaming and shaming herself in the process.
A Change in Perspective
During a weight discussion panel for her website, Oprah Daily, Winfrey had an epiphany. She came to the realization that she had been excessively harsh on herself. “When I first started hearing about the [medication], at the same time, I was going through knee surgery, and I felt, ‘I’ve got to do this on my own.’ Because if I take the drug, that’s the easy way out,” she confessed.
Winfrey shifted her mindset, acknowledging that her weight struggles were not solely due to lack of willpower. She recognized that obesity is a disease and that it’s about more than just self-control—it’s about the brain.
A Multifaceted Approach to Weight Loss
While Winfrey found relief in medication prescribed by her doctor, she emphasized that it wasn’t the sole reason behind her weight loss. After recovering from knee surgery in 2021, she adopted a more active lifestyle, regularly hiking and making other positive changes.
Additionally, Winfrey follows the principles of Weight Watchers, which include eating her last meal at 4 o’clock, drinking a gallon of water per day, and counting points. She noted that her routine is a holistic approach, combining medication, exercise, and mindful eating. “I know that if I’m not also working out and vigilant about all the other things, it doesn’t work for me,” she confessed.
Currently weighing 167 pounds, Winfrey is just seven pounds away from her goal weight of 160. But her weight loss journey has become about more than just reaching a number on the scale. It’s about redemption and reclaiming control of her life.
Reflecting on her newfound sense of freedom, Winfrey shared a poignant moment from her time in Hawaii. “In Hawaii, I live on a mountain, and there’s this big hill—I used to look out the window every morning and say, ‘God, one day I want to walk up that mountain.’ Last year over Christmas I did it… It felt like redemption,” she described.
With her renewed outlook on life and a commitment to self-acceptance, Winfrey is determined to no longer be defined by her weight or subjected to the criticism of others. She is forging her own path towards health and happiness.