Oprah Winfrey On Dieting Is All Too Real: "I Was Desperate"

Photo: Jeffrey Mayer/WireImage.
The subject of dieting has long been a taboo one. A woman's figure is something that everyone can clearly see with their own two eyes, yet for decades women (and men) have been letting the scale dictate how they feel and carry themselves. We, at Refinery29, value bodies, period. No clean eating, or dieting needed here. And Oprah Winfrey is on the same page as us (I'd like to think that Winfrey and I are on the same page about a lot of things).
Speaking with journalist Taffy Brodesser-Akner for New York Times Magazine, Winfrey opens up about her struggles with dieting, and how even her — Oprah frickin' Winfrey — has limits when it comes to the body positivity movement that is currently sweeping the world of wellness.
Winfrey told Brodesser-Akner that she doesn't care if she's never "skinny" again, but she does care about her health. "For your heart to pump, pump, pump, pump, it needs the least amount of weight possible to do that,’’ she said. "So all of the people who are saying, ‘Oh, I need to accept myself as I am’ — I can’t accept myself if I’m over 200 pounds, because it’s too much work on my heart. It causes high blood pressure for me. It puts me at risk for diabetes, because I have diabetes in my family."
The entire piece is hinged around the declining popularity in Weight Watchers, a company known for its portion control and weight monitoring for its participants to lose weight by cutting calories, in favor of wellness buzzwords like "strong," and "fit." As a spokesperson for WW, Winfrey starred in a now iconic commercial declaring her love of bread. ‘‘In the particular moment in time that I got the call,’’ she said of agreeing to join the WW team, ‘‘I was desperate: What’s going to work? I’ve tried all of the green juices and protein shakes, and let’s do a cleanse, and all that stuff. That doesn’t work. It doesn’t last. What is going to be consistent, keep me conscious and mindful?’"
Everyone's journey to self-love is different, but it's comforting in a way to hear even the most powerful and influential women in the world admit her limits. And also, it's Oprah!
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