Model Gigi Hadid has been on the receiving end of some pretty nasty body shaming – so much so that she’s felt pushed into explaining herself on Twitter.
Hadid took to social media to open up about her diagnosis with Hashimoto’s disease, and how this has affected her body.
For those of you so determined to come up w why my body has changed over the years, you may not know that when I started @ 17 I was not yet diagnosed w/Hashimoto’s disease; those of u who called me “too big for the industry” were seeing inflammation & water retention due to that.— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
Over the last few years I’ve been properly medicated to help symptoms including those, as well as extreme fatigue, metabolism issues, body’s ability to retain heat, etc ... I was also part of a holistic medical trial that helped my thyroid levels balance out.— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
Although stress & excessive travel can also affect the body, I have always eaten the same, my body just handles it differently now that my health is better. I may be “too skinny” for u, honestly this skinny isn’t what I want to be, but I feel healthier internally and (cont)— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
(cont) am still learning and growing with my body everyday, as everyone is.— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
Weight fluctuations and inflammation are two classic symptoms of Hashimoto’s disease. With this in mind, Hadid asks people to not tear others down, particularly as they might not know the full picture.
I will not further explain the way my body looks, just as anyone, with a body type that doesnt suit ur “beauty” expectation, shouldnt have to. Not to judge others, but drugs are not my thing, stop putting me in that box just because u dont understand the way my body has matured.— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
Please, as social media users & human beings in general, learn to have more empathy for others and know that you never really know the whole story. Use your energy to lift those that you admire rather than be cruel to those u don’t.— Gigi Hadid (@GiGiHadid) February 11, 2018
Opening up about her condition is a brave thing to do, and will hopefully raise some awareness around it. So what exactly is it, and what impact can it have on your body?
It’s an autoimmune condition which means that your immune system attacks your thyroid. It causes your thyroid to swell up and become damaged.
In case your memory of GCSE biology feels a bit foggy, your thyroid is an endocrine gland in your neck. It makes hormones that are needed for your body to function properly.
Hashimoto’s disease slowly destroys the thyroid, and prevents it from properly producing these hormones.
@GiGiHadid I applaud you for your bravery and courage. I too live with Hashimoto’s and it’s not easy. Thank you queen for shedding light on this disease! 👏🏾👏🏾👏🏾— Lori Laws (@lorijlaws) February 12, 2018
Many of the symptoms that Hadid talks about are classic of Hashimoto’s disease, such as tiredness, weight gain and inflammation.
Other symptoms of the condition include: constipation, dry skin, hair loss, muscle aches and brittle nails. In more extreme cases, a lump (goitre) can be felt at the front of your throat.
Women are more likely to suffer from the disease than men, as are those who have a history of autoimmune diseases in the family.
Because the disease has such a slow effect on the body, it often takes a long time to be detected and then treated.
Whilst there is no cure for Hashimoto’s disease (nor do doctors know exactly why it occurs), symptoms can be managed with various drugs. Hadid mentions in her tweets how she’s used medication to help manage symptoms like fatigue and inflammation.
If the goitre is particularly painful, patients might have to undergo surgery to remove it.
I stand with @GiGiHadid - The body shaming has to stop! The truth is no matter who you are, we all struggle with being criticized about our bodies. “Healthy” looks different on everyone! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️— Martha Hunt (@MarthaHunt) February 12, 2018