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Gabourey Sidibe opens up about weight-loss surgery

"I truly didn't want to worry about all the effects that go along with diabetes," Gabourey Sidibe told People magazine. Credit: Invision / Richard Shotwell

“Empire” star Gabourey Sidibe is opening up about the laparoscopic bariatric weight-loss surgery she underwent 10 months ago.

Saying that she and her older brother Ahmed had both been diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes, the “Precious” Academy Award-nominee told People magazine in an interview posted Wednesday that, “I truly didn’t want to worry about all the effects that go along with diabetes. I genuinely [would] worry all the time about losing my toes,” a surgical necessity in some extreme cases.

In her upcoming memoir, “This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare,” Sidibe, 33, writes that she had attempted for a decade to lose weight through other means before finally consenting to the surgery, in which “they’d cut my stomach in half. This would limit my hunger and capacity to eat. My brain chemistry would change and I’d want to eat healthier.

“The surgery wasn’t the easy way out,” she told People. “I wasn’t cheating by getting it done. I wouldn’t have been able to lose as much as I’ve lost without it.”

She has changed her eating habits, she added, and is working with a nutritionist and a trainer.

Sidibe reflects now that, “There’s nothing ugly about me. Anyone trying to convince me that I am — and it’s usually me — is wasting her time,” she says. “I was in a war with my body for a long time. If I’d started treating it better sooner, I wouldn’t have spent so many years hating myself. But I love my body now.


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