LeAnn Rimes Opens Up About Her Struggles With Body Image, Health, Anxiety, And Depression
LeAnn Rimes grew up in the public eye. She broke into the country music scene at just 13 years old and doesn’t remember her life any other way. On Tuesday’s Dr. Oz Show, Rimes shared how she has dealt with body shaming and criticism throughout her career, even as just a young girl. She also opened up about some difficult mental and physical health struggles she has faced over the years and how she is doing now.
LeAnn Rimes told Dr. Oz that as soon as her country music career took off, people had opinions of her body and weight. She said she was so young she still had “baby fat,” yet she was often criticized for being too heavy. Rimes explained everyone goes through an “awkward stage,” but it’s even more difficult to navigate when it’s happening in front of the entire world.
Rimes said that she had to learn to separate herself from the outside criticism. Realizing that there is the “real” LeAnn versus a fabricated version of LeAnn that everyone is talking about has helped. She feels things are much worse these days with cyber bullying which she has had to deal with. Rimes said it has been very hurtful at times, adding that social media is a “breeding ground for hatred.”
LeAnn Rimes said that as she matured and started working out a lot, she was then shamed for being too skinny. Dr. Oz displayed a picture of her in a bikini that showed a very thin figure. She replied that she was “very fit” at that time.
Rimes went on to explain that she is very into working out and staying fit. She also pointed out that the photo was taken at a time when she was experiencing a great deal of stress, saying, “I could literally eat my husband under the table then and not gain weight.” She insists that was just how her body responded to the stress at that time.
LeAnn Rimes went on to say that she’s even been criticized for simply wearing a bikini, which she feels is ridiculous since people do wear them at the beach. She explained with a laugh that it’s not like she’s skiing down the bunny slopes in a bikini or wearing them anywhere that it wouldn’t be appropriate.
LeAnn Rimes also opened up about her longtime struggle with severe psoriasis which she kept private for many years. Psoriasis is a chronic, inflammatory skin condition caused by an overactive immune system, according to WebMD. Rimes stated she never thought she would be able to go out in public in a bikini and feel comfortable in her own skin. She joked that when she finally was able to get the psoriasis under control, “I would have walked around naked if I could have!”
LeAnn Rimes said that her psoriasis began when she was just a toddler. She described the painful condition, saying that it would cover her entire body with only her hands, feet, and face clear. When Rimes was performing, she would sometimes have to put on three pairs of pantyhose to hide big, angry welts on her legs.
LeAnn Rimes said she thinks her skin condition was made worse by stress and anxiety which created a vicious cycle. She would be stressed over dealing with the psoriasis which just made it worse and led to more and more stress.
After years and years of trying many different treatments and medications, LeAnn Rimes finally found what works for her and it has kept her skin clear for about 11 years now. She takes a biologic medication and also credits a healthier lifestyle along with stress and anxiety management for helping to keep her psoriasis at bay.
LeAnn Rimes revealed that she feels she has dealt with anxiety issues since she was a child. As she became older and the stress in her life multiplied, anxiety and depression began to take over. When Rimes entered treatment, rumors surfaced that she must have an eating disorder or drug addiction, which she said were simply not true. LeAnn feels there is still a stigma attached to mental illness in our society and that it’s not taken seriously enough.
LeAnn Rimes told Dr. Oz she is in a “good place now” in every area of her life. She wanted to open up about her struggles because she feels a “deep empathy” for those who are facing similar battles. Rimes hopes sharing her experiences will help others know that they aren’t alone.
[Photo by Rick Diamond/Getty Images]