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Gabourey Sidibe: I Secretly Underwent Weight Loss Surgery in 2016

Gabourey Sidibe Weight Loss Surgery
Marcus Ingram, Getty Images

Gabourey Sidibe‘s undergone big-time transformations for roles in Precious, American Horror Story and Empire, but her latest real-life change — weight-loss surgery — might just amount to her most meaningful work yet.

In an interview with People — which doubles as a preview of Sidibe’s new book This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare — the actress said she decided to undergo secret weight-loss surgery last year after she and her brother were diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes. The laproscopic bariatric surgery (which she described as doctors cutting her stomach in half) was a last resort of sorts, she said, and noted that she simply wasn’t getting healthier no matter how disciplined her own attempts at weight loss were.

“My lifelong relationship with food had to change,” she said. “I just didn’t want to worry…I genuinely [would] worry all the time about losing my toes.”

Sidibe insisted, though, that the surgery has not been for the sake of vanity, and said she has no intention of getting super thin.

“It has taken me years to realize that what I was born with is all beautiful,” she wrote in her book. “I did not get this surgery to be beautiful. I did it so I can walk around comfortably in heels. I want to do a cartwheel. I want not to be in pain every time I walk up a flight of stairs.”

“I know I’m beautiful in my current face and my current body,” she added. “What I don’t know about is the next body. I admit it, I hope to God I don’t get skinny. If I could lose enough to just be a little chubby, I’ll be over the moon! Will I still be beautiful then? S—. Probably. My beauty doesn’t come from a mirror. It never will.”

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