Gina Rodriguez Opens Up About Battling Thyroid Disease

In a new interview with People, Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez opens up about her struggle with thyroid disease, and she has some amazingly body-positive advice to go with it. "It began when I was 19 years old and I got fired, and I realized keeping my weight down was going to be much more difficult," she explained to People. Rather than stress about losing weight, Rodriguez made a decision to persevere in Hollywood, despite being diagnosed with Hashimoto's disease, an autoimmune condition that occurs when the immune system attacks the thyroid gland, resulting in inflammation and interference with the thyroid’s ability to produce hormones. As is true in many cases of Hashimoto’s disease, Rodriguez’s condition progressed to hypothyroidism — a disorder caused by a lack of thyroid hormones, which are needed to regulate metabolism. Hypothyroidism often has symptoms of weight gain, fatigue, and muscle pain. In our body-shaming, beauty-standard obsessed culture, being a woman in Hollywood is already hard, which is why Rodriguez's commitment to changing harmful norms is so inspiring. By sharing her story, Rodriguez is bringing awareness to a condition that affects millions of people (the majority of whom are women) across the U.S. "For many years, I had a daily conversation with myself about how I was going to help make that change," Rodriguez told People. "Because there is no way in this world things are only allotted to certain people because of their figure. There is no way that should be possible. There is no way that’s fair. There is no way that kind of limitation is going to help those that don’t fit into that box."

Thankfully, Rodriguez offers some great advice to anyone struggling with body confidence. "Recognize the voice that comes in but wants to tear down the beautiful, amazing human being that you are," she said. "And when that demon comes in and says your thighs are thick, you say, 'You know what, demon? Yes they are, and I am going to work them. I am going to rock the shit out of my thick thighs and I am rocking this whole damn city with my thick thighs loving them.'" Duly noted.

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