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Portia de Rossi: On the Other Side of Her Eating Disorder

We've seen a lot of Portia de Rossi in recent days - accompanying her girlfriend Ellen to the Oscars, bragging to Barbara Walters about all of the citrus trees they have on their ranch in Santa Barbara (I only have a one lemon tree so I am bit jealous). I find it great that there is more of her than there used to be. I mean literally more of her. In 1999, at the height of her eating disorder while working on Ally McBeal, she weighed as little as 82 pounds.

At 5 feet 7 and half inches tall this makes her BMI 12.8 woefully low, too low to walk the runway in Madrid. During this calorie deprived, exercise obsessed time, her family gently intervened. Her mother and brother told her point blank that she was killing herself. Family support is so important when dealing with anorexia and other eating disorders, and they helped her turn the corner.

Portia is concerned that other actresses do not follow in her footsteps. She warns them "‘Do as I say, not as I do,’ because I have firsthand experience with being caught up in the whole Hollywood body thing.” She does also wonder if she was not a member of the Ally McBeal cast, where many of the actresses were famously underweight, if she would have gotten caught up in becoming dangerously thin.

After limiting her food intake to 300 calories a day back in 1999, she no longer puts restrictions on food. Which is great because there are so many great dishes to make with all the fresh citrus fruit.

Ellen has also helped her come to terms with her eating issues.

“We’ve talked a lot about this. I’m not proud of this struggle. [While anorexic] it just seemed like I literally wanted to disappear. And now I would like to reappear.”

Well I for one would love to see more of her. I miss her and Arrested Development and hope to see her on screen soon. I think it is great that she is talking about her experience.


Join The Conversation
blu_butterfly blu_butterfly 9 years
she is really very pretty :) she and ellen looks so great together :)
sugar_bear sugar_bear 10 years
Wow, she is so beautiful! I had no idea that she struggled with anorexia, and I am super proud of her for gaining a few pounds, and she can definitley afford to gain more!
steviasweet steviasweet 10 years
Loved Arrested Development! Portia looks gorgeous-lucky Ellen. (heehee)
kscincotta kscincotta 10 years
In these photos, she looks more toned, but in some others she looks really skinny, again. I'm glad she's got her head straight, I would hate for her to get any smaller.
Marci Marci 10 years
She does look much better, and I hope she'll gain a few more pounds. She's so pretty, but didn't look good at all when she got so thin. What a smile she's got.
iffermay iffermay 10 years
I noticed in the Oscar pitcures posted SUnday how big her smile was. SHe is in good place for her and it shows (even if sh is still a bit too skinny.....)
JustSomeChick JustSomeChick 10 years
I didn't realize she was that thin during Ally McBeal either. I think she looks great now! Very svelte and toned. And Arrested Development was the best show ever!
honeysugar28 honeysugar28 10 years
She's so pretty! I didn't realize she was that thin during Alley McBeal. I think she's improved tremendously she looks very muscular.
grl-in-the-world grl-in-the-world 10 years
I felt so bad for her seeing pics of her when she was so thin during her Ally days. It's a great thing for her to speak out about it now and educate other women in her business about the dangers of calorie obsession. She is a beautiful woman and would look great even if she gained some more weight. I'm so glad she has found happiness with Ellen.
3Sweeties 3Sweeties 10 years
She still looks awfully thin to me, but this is a great improvement over how she used to look! I am glad that she is working on being healthy- it is hard for everyone, at every size.
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