Actor Vidya Balan is one of the most talented actors of Bollywood with several awards and accolades to boast about. Her filmography includes critically acclaimed movies like Kahaani, No One Killed Jessica, Parineeta and most recently Tumhari Sulu. However, in a recent interview to Filmfare, Vidya talked about how she had to deal with several hurdles in her career to get this far, even her struggle with her weight.
Vidya said that while she has come to accept her body for what it is, her journey to this acceptance wasn’t so smooth. “I’ve been called ‘jinxed’ down South. I rejected my body all my life. I worked hard at accepting myself. That acceptance isn’t complete yet. It’s still a long way. People don’t understand that when you grow up a fat girl, it doesn’t leave you,” she said.
Vidya added that it is hard for her to lose weight due to her hormonal problems. “I’ve had hormonal problems all my life. It’s probably because of the judgment I’ve carried around my body. When I was a teenager, people would tell me, ‘You’ve got such a pretty face, why don’t you lose some weight?’ It’s not a nice thing to say to anyone. Be it a child or a grown-up. So, I’d starve myself, I’d go through crazy exercise regimens and lose weight. Then the hormonal issue would settle for a bit before it reared its head again. I guess it was my body’s way of revolting because in wanting it to be what it was not, I was constantly rejecting it,” she said. “
She said that she does not look at herself from the same lens anymore. “But it’s taken a lot of work to get to accept my body. Ironically, it’s one’s own rejection of the body that also causes hormonal issues. I guess it’s a chicken and egg situation. Who knows what came first? Therefore, if I can convince even one person that it’s okay to be just the way you are – thin or fat – it would be worthwhile,” she said.
“When people tell me why don’t you start exercising, I want to say f**k you! How do you know I haven’t been exercising? Do you know how hard I exercise? Do you know what challenges I’ve been facing? Do you know that my hormonal problem has made it impossible for me to lose weight for years in between? Not just that, there was a period in between when the more I’d work out, the more I’d put on? People would insinuate that you must be eating unhealthy or that you’re lazy. And these things stick with you. It would anger me no end. I kept wanting people to stop judging me. But over time, I realized that people judge you/your body only if you do,” she added.