In the January issue of “O” magazine, Oprah Winfrey comes clean about her weight gain – saying she has “fallen off the wagon” in terms of healthy living and currently weighs 200 pounds.
“I’m mad at myself,” Winfrey writes in an article provided early to The Associated Press by Harpo Productions. “I’m embarrassed. I can’t believe that after all these years, all the things I know how to do, I’m still talking about my weight. I look at my thinner self and think, `How did I let this happen again?'”
In the “O” issue, out Tuesday, Winfrey writes about her recently-diagnosed thyroid condition that has made her develop “a fear of working out.” She says she’s added 40 pounds to her frame since she weighed 160 pounds in 2006.
“Yes, you’re adding correctly; that means the dreaded 2-0-0,” Winfrey writes “I was so frustrated I started eating whatever I wanted — and that’s never good.”
In the “O” article, Winfrey writes that she hit rock bottom when she wanted to skip out on an April 26 taping with Cher and Tina Turner in Las Vegas.
“I felt like a fat cow,” Winfrey writes. “I wanted to disappear.”
Winfrey writes that her goal is no longer to be thin; instead, she wants to be strong, healthy and fit. The new goal comes 20 years after she famously wheeled a wagon loaded with fat onto the set of her talk show to represent a 67-pound weight loss while wearing a pair of size 10 Calvin Klein jeans. She had lost the pounds with a liquid protein diet.
“I had literally starved myself for four months — not a morsel of food,” Winfrey recalled in 2005. “Two hours after that show, I started eating to celebrate — of course, within two days those jeans no longer fit!”
Winfrey’s weight has fluctuated wildly ever since, ballooning to as much as 237 pounds. By late 1990, she admitted she had regained most of the 67 pounds, saying “I’ll never diet again.”
In 1994, she trained for and completed the Marine Corps Marathon and by 1996 hired her trainer Bob Greene and proclaimed that her weight saga was over.
Winfrey’s current weight and height put her body mass index at 31.8, which is obese, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC says people who are obese are “at higher risk for chronic conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol.”
Winfrey says she hopes to turn things around with the Jan. 5 launch of her “Best Life Week” on “The Oprah Winfrey Show,” where she is expected to talk about her recent weight gain. She’ll take an all-hands-on-deck approach to the issue by featuring Greene and Dr. Mehmet Oz to her show during the first week of January, as well as spirituality experts, sex therapists and financial expert Suze Orman.
Winfrey also is expected to discuss her weight on her XM satellite radio station’s “The Gayle King Show” on Jan. 5 and will host interactive live Web casts at Oprah.com the week of Jan. 12 to 16 every night at 9 p.m. EST.
Winfrey, an admitted food addict, sounds almost apologetic in her article.
“I definitely wasn’t setting an example,” she writes. “I was talking the talk, but I wasn’t walking the walk. And that was very disappointing to me.”