Renee Zellweger was once warned she was ‘going to die’ due to weight issues – why?
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Zellweger features on ITV tonight (July 22) in the 2004 film Bridget Jones: The End of Reason. For this movie, the star was on a 4,000-calorie diet and didn’t go to the gym so she could gain over 13 kilograms (two stone). She had a similar regime for the filming of the 2001 film Bridget Jones’s Diary. It was a lifestyle Zellweger disliked. After filming The End of Reason, the star rushed back to the gym and lost weight rapidly. However, fluctuating in weight had taken its toll on Zellweger, and over the years she has become determined not to suffer the same fate again.
After losing weight following the filming of Bridget Jones’s diary, the star was warned by specialists “you must stop this now or you’re going to die”.
In a throwback interview, she said: “I had a panic attack with all the specialists talking about how bad this is for you, long term, putting on that much weight in short periods of time. They’re all saying, ‘You must stop this now or you’re going to die’.”
Yet, the warning didn’t stop her from starting the 4,000-calorie diet for the filming of The End of Reason, viewing it as necessary.
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During filming for the film in 2003, the star told Closer Magazine: “It’s easier for me this time around because I know what I have to do and how to do it.
“It would be silly if Bridget was talking about her chubby thighs and they weren’t chubby.”
But by 2010, acting had become too much and she went on a hiatus. She wouldn’t return for six years.
Reminiscing over the break in an interview with New York Magazine in 2019, she said: “I wasn’t healthy.
“I wasn’t taking care of myself. I was the last thing on my list of priorities.”
Rapid weight loss is known to have some serious side effects, including fatigue, hormone imbalance, headaches, and constipation.
Rapidly losing weight also increases the risk of gallstones, and electrolyte imbalance, which can be life-threatening.
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These days, the star refuses to be pressured into putting on weight for entertainment purposes. She has publicly said she now refuses and won’t be “apologetic”.
Talking to InStyle, she emphasised her priority of being a “healthy, productive woman”.
“I’d rather celebrate each phase of my life and be present in it than mourn something that’s passed,” she said.
“I don’t want to miss this moment to be something that I used to be.
“I’m not saying I’m cancelling my gym membership anytime soon, because I’m not.
“I’d rather be a healthy, productive woman in each stage of my life than apologetic,” she added.
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