Belfast Telegraph

Jade Thirlwall: Doctors told me anorexia would kill me if I didn’t stop

The Little Mix star struggled with the eating disorder when she was a teenager.

Jade Thirlwall (Scott Garfitt/PA)
Jade Thirlwall (Scott Garfitt/PA)

By Julia Hunt, PA Entertainment Correspondent

Jade Thirlwall has told how doctors once warned her that anorexia was going to kill her.

The Little Mix star battled the eating disorder in her teens, before she went on The X Factor in 2011.

She said on the BBC Sounds Life Hacks podcast that it got to the point where she “just wanted to sort of waste away”.

“I obviously became very small and my ribs were sticking out,” she said.

“I was very gaunt and I used to wear a lot of baggy clothes to hide that.

“In my head, I felt so down and so depressed about everything that was going on in my life, I really just wanted to sort of waste away.

“I got in a really horrible state.”

Thirlwall, 26, went on: “The turning point – and the reason why I first told my counsellor – was because I got tired of hating myself so much. It was a really horrible hole to be in.”

“The second turning point for me was when I was at hospital and the doctors told me that I would actually die if I kept doing it,” she added.

“To hear somebody say that to you is actually quite scary and I started to realise how damaging it was for my family.

“I’d become so selfish with how I felt about myself I forgot that I had family and friends who were also really hurting because of what I was doing.”

Thirlwall sought help and was discharged not long before she went on The X Factor, which is where she became a part of Little Mix alongside Leigh-Anne Pinnock, Jesy Nelson and Perrie Edwards.

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Little Mix (Owen Humphreys/PA)

She said she does not think she will ever relapse.

“It’s weird for me because I feel like me having anorexia is literally like a different person – I don’t associate it at all with who I am now,” she said.

“Because I got through it and honestly hand on heart I don’t think I would ever do that to myself again, because I realise how life changing it was to become better.”

PA

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