Gabourey Sidibe sent shockwaves across the industry when she flaunted her stunning body on Instagram. The star of the multiple award-winning movie, Precious (2009), weighed 300 pounds. And she lost about 150 pounds! But it is not just a physical transformation. Her weight loss has helped her fight type 2 diabetes, depression, anxiety, and bulimia. Gaby’s weight loss story is truly inspiring, and if you are struggling with your weight, you need to read this. Because you (or anyone) can win against an unhealthy lifestyle and achieve what others think you can’t. Swipe up to find out how.
Gabourey Sidibe – Before She Was Famous
Gabourey Sidibe was just like you and me before she landed her iconic role in Precious. She was born on 6th May 1983 in Brooklyn, New York. Her mother, Alice Tan Ridley, is a gospel and American R&B singer, and her father, Ibnou Sidibe, is a cab driver. Gaby grew up with her aunt and attended City College of New York and Mercy College. Before joining the entertainment industry, she worked as a receptionist at the Fresh Air Fund. So, how did everything fall into place? Let’s find out!
How Did Gabourey Land Her Role In Precious?
While attending City College of New York, she started pursuing her passion – acting. Fortunately, she landed an audition for Precious in 2007. It was previously named Push: Based on the Novel by Sapphire, a story about a young woman struggling with poverty and physical and sexual abuse. The movie received many accolades at the Cannes Film Festival and Sundance Film Festival. At the time, the movie did not have a distributor, but Oprah Winfrey helped with the promotion of the movie, and it was released through Lionsgate Entertainment. The name was changed to prevent confusion with the action drama, Push. And the rest is history – People’s Choice Award, Oscar nominations and wins, and tremendous success and recognition. And with success came the pressure of being “presentable” to the world. But did Gaby decide to lose weight just to look pretty? Find out what prompted her to lose so much weight in the next section.
Why Did Gabourey Sidibe Decide To Lose Weight?
Every woman dreads the words “ugly” and “fat.” When a woman is not a typical size and shape, especially in the entertainment industry, she is quickly outcasted and discriminated at various levels. Things are changing now, but at a snail’s pace. Gabourey Sidibe was once told by a renowned actor that she should quit the industry as it is so image-conscious! Brushing off comments like this is tough for anyone. But what really got her attention and made her finally take her health seriously was when she learned that she had type 2 diabetes. She was alarmed to know that her life was at risk, and it was then that she decided to lose weight.
How Did Gabourey Sidibe Lose About 150 Pounds So Quickly?
Soon after Gabourey learned that she had type 2 diabetes, she consulted with her doctor, Dr. Bradley Schwack, a bariatric surgeon, and decided to undergo weight loss surgery. In this surgery, the doctor removed 80% of her stomach to reduce its capacity. As a result, she would not be able to eat too much food at a time and soon feel full. Gabourey confirmed that she did go under the knife and stated, “The surgery wasn’t the easy way out. I wasn’t cheating by getting it done. I wouldn’t have been able to lose as much as I’ve lost without it.” She also had to take some effort to help this expensive surgery be successful. Scroll down to find out what else Gaby did to keep the weight off.
Gabourey Sidibe Weight Loss Diet Secrets
Here are the best and most practical tips Gaby follows to keep from gaining the excess flab back.
- She Avoids Soda
While growing up, Gabourey Sidibe would drink soda frequently and have burger and fries. These unhealthy and poor eating choices were the initial reasons for weight gain. When she decided to lose the weight for her health, the first thing she did was to cut out soda from her diet completely. Instead, she started drinking ice-cold water with a few lemon slices. It kept her hydrated and flushed out all the toxins from her body.
- No More Junk Food
The next step that Gaby took was to remove all the junk food from her diet. Her childhood was filled with junk food, and she would eat Oreos and fries. Cutting down on burgers, pizza, fries, and all other processed foods helped lower the salt and trans fats intake. She started snacking on vegetable chips, hummus, and saltine crackers.
- Eats At The Right Time
Apart from making healthier food choices, consuming food at the right time is also highly important. She started consuming 6-7 meals per day with a heavy breakfast, a mid-sized lunch, and a light dinner. Drinking water 20 minutes before every meal also prevented her from overeating and kept her hydrated.
- Maintains Portion Size
Maintaining the portion size is crucial when it comes to losing weight. Because no matter how healthily you eat, if you overeat, you will still gain weight. So, Gabourey Sidibe talked to a nutritionist and her personal trainer and started consuming the right amounts of good carbs (veggies, fruits, and grains), protein, and healthy fats (olive oil, avocado, seeds, and nuts)
- Uses A Smaller Plate
The best way to control portion is to eat in a smaller plate. When you consume food in a smaller plate, your brain tricks you into assuming the small quantity of food to be a large quantity of food. As a result, you’d feel like you have eaten a lot when clearly, you have not.
- Reduced Her Salt And Sugar Consumption
Gabourey loved Oreos and cupcakes and binged on them. However, since her diagnosis, she made a firm decision to give up on them too. The sugar content in these foods is very high, and when you are diabetic, you have to control the amount of sugar you consume. So, she gave up on her favorites to improve her body composition and help treat diabetes type 2.
So, is only eating enough to lose weight? Of course not! Here’s what Gaby did after one month of following healthy eating.
Gabourey Sidibe’s Exercise Plan
After she started eating healthily, she started feeling more active and energetic. But she knew that to speed up the process of weight loss, she had to get a professional trainer who would help her slowly get back in shape. Here’s her exercise routine.
She started with low-impact exercises, like slow walks on the treadmill, stair stepper, and Versaclimber to put minimal pressure on her joints. This cardio helped her burn calories effectively. She moved on to other exercises for 30 minutes, three days per week. They included leg press, lunges, squats, lat pull down, and barbell curl. She also posted an impressive photo of her doing aerial yoga in June 2017. So far, she is going great, and all her hard work is showing in her body.
So, you see, anyone can achieve a better and healthier body if they really want to and put their efforts to get there. Gabourey Sidibe is a living example. Take her story as motivation and do what you need to do to improve your lifestyle and overall well-being. Start following the right diet, take a gym subscription (because working out at home is not much of a driving force for many of us), and build social support by talking and networking with people with similar fitness or weight loss goals. And for sure, you will start to see results in just a few weeks. No more doubting yourself, just go for it! Take care.