Oprah Winfrey has always been an open book, and now she's getting candid about how she managed to shed some pounds in the last few weeks.
In a new interview with People, the TV star, 69, she admitted she relies on weight-loss medication to maintain her svelte figure.
"I had the biggest aha along with many people in that audience," she said of her taped panel conversation with weight loss experts, which was posted in July. "I realized I’d been blaming myself all these years for being overweight, and I have a predisposition that no amount of willpower is going to control."
"Obesity is a disease. It’s not about willpower — it's about the brain," she continued.
After the actress heard the science behind it, she "released my own shame about it" and spoke to her doctor about next steps.
"I now use it as I feel I need it, as a tool to manage not yo-yoing," she shared, though she didn't mention what specific drug she's taking.
"The fact that there's a medically approved prescription for managing weight and staying healthier, in my lifetime, feels like relief, like redemption, like a gift, and not something to hide behind and once again be ridiculed for. I’m absolutely done with the shaming from other people and particularly myself," she added.
The Color Purple star reflected on how she was constantly criticized for her physique when she was thrust into the spotlight.
"It was a public sport to make fun of me for 25 years," she confessed. “The things that were said about me, said to me, around me, the jokes that were made. You could not get away with it in the slightest sense today.”
“I just accepted that as that’s what it is, and I didn’t feel angry. I felt sad. I felt hurt. I felt shame. But it didn’t occur to me that I could even feel angry,” she added. “I swallowed the shame, and I accepted that it was my fault.”
But she now feels better than ever.
"I started hiking and setting new distance goals each week. I could eventually hike three to five miles every day and a 10-mile straight-up hike on weekends," she shared. "I felt stronger, more fit and more alive than I’d felt in years."
"It was a second shot for me to live a more vital and vibrant life," she declared.