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Gina Rodriguez Talks Battling Hashimoto’s Disease and Being Told She’s “Not Enough”

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It’s difficult enough to succeed as a woman of color in the entertainment industry. Now imagine doing it when you have a disease that takes away your appetite while your weight shoots up, as well as leaves you so exhausted that sleeping eighteen hours a day is the norm? That was pretty much Jane the Virgin star Gina Rodriguez’s life.

In an interview with Women’s Health Magazine, Rodriguez opens up about her constant battle with her body, her image, and other people’s opinions as she pursued a career in one of the most judgmental industries there is! At nineteen, while she was studying drama at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, she started feeling sick. It turned out she had a thyroid condition called Hahimoto’s Disease, which basically causes you to gain weight while never wanting to eat and constantly zonks you out.

When she first received her diagnosis, she made the mistake of being so obstinate about not letting her disease stop her, that she didn’t take her meds. “I would almost not be conscientious about my health because I wanted to be accepted the way I was—as curvy,” Rodriguez explained. She was trying to make a statement, but then realized that she was actually just not taking care of herself.

Despite her current success, she still fights with herself over her body image every day. Even while doing this photo shoot for Women’s Health, part of her felt uneasy and “not skinny enough.” “This Women’s Health shoot was probably the most challenging one I’ve ever done,” Rodriguez said. “I look back on other photo shoots, and even if I’m wearing something super tight, I’m not showing my skin or the real pieces of me—like that little bit of extra booty that hangs off the other part of the booty. In my head, I was like, That’s ugly, that doesn’t look good. [Then] I thought, Nope—not today. Your perfect is your perfect, not anybody else’s, and not this illusionary perfect curve.”

Let yourself be inspired by this awesome behind-the-scenes video from the photo shoot. Then, for the full interview, head on over to Women’s Health Magazine and revel in the awesomeness that is Gina Rodriguez.

(image via Dominick D/Flickr)

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