Richa Chadha, the actress who shot to fame with the movie Masaan spoke to Mumbai Mirror about how she felt alone and depressed and suffered from a eating disorder. Being in the movie industry, celebrities are always conscious of their shape and diet. Richa who is from a Punjabi household found it difficult to cope up with this pressure and body shaming. She says,
‘There is a lot of pressure because everyone is judging you on the basis of how you look. On screen your face is magnified so people are pointing to your nose, eyes, jawline, smile and even your eyelashes.’
Richa was going through long hours of fasting, munching on protein bars and Red Bulls, and feeling guilty every time she felt hungry. She finally got a wake up after she watched the Oscar winning documentary Amy by Asif Kapadia on a flight journey.
‘It was a nine-hour flight. I saw the film in the first two hours and spent the remainder of the flight weeping, landing with red, swollen eyes. But being away from people helped and I decided to take control of my life and body.’
It took several months for Richa to get over her eating disorder. She sought help from a naturopath and a nutritionist and now, she up and about. Richa wants to share her story with the world to raise awareness.
‘The reason I am talking about it is because I know not just actors but housewives and teenagers who’re struggling with this poor little rich girl problem. At a time when the West is celebrating curves, we are ordering fatmelting medicines and living on suppliments which can mess up a woman’s hormones and childbearing ability and lead to sperm and hair loss in men.’