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The empowering reason why Holly Willoughby will never talk about her body

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Hannah-Rose Yee
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Holly Willoughby

The television presenter has a very good motive for staying quiet on the subjects of diet and exercise.

Holly Willoughby has had her body scrutinised endlessly by the online and tabloid media.

She is a woman in this world, and in the public eye, so it’s only and sadly natural. But the television presenter told The Sunday Times that the media’s fascination with her diet, exercise and fitness routine has resolved her never to speak publicly on the subject.

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“I very deliberately don’t talk about it,” she told The Sunday Times. “Just because I don’t think it’s helpful to the conversation for women generally. As long as you are healthy and happy, that’s really all that matters.”

Willoughby stressed that society’s ‘obsession’ with weight and diet culture is truly unhealthy. “It’s a personal thing for me, and I think that people get obsessive with it. On this show I’ve sat across the sofa from mums and dads who’ve lost children to anorexia, or their children are currently going through it, and they sit there and say, ‘It doesn’t help that there’s such a fascination with weight at the moment.’”

She continued: “Everybody knows what leads to a healthy lifestyle, but it’s not up to me to give you a blow-by-blow account of what I’ve eaten that day. It’s not helpful, and it’s not what is important.

It’s not the only subject that Willoughby has resolved to stay quiet on. She also told The Sunday Times that she refuses to acknowledge any online trolls or abuse that she receives.

“Not just about social media, but in all aspects of life,” she explained. “If there’s any negativity coming in from anywhere, I don’t want to be a part of it. I know the kind of people that are doing it, and I’m not going to let it have oxygen. I don’t want them to have any impact on my life.”

For Willoughby, the only opinions she will listen to are those that come from the people who really matter. “I want Phil [Schofield] to impact my life,” she said. “My family to impact my life, my girlfriends who I hold so close, you know, all those people that I have total respect for their opinions. They’re the people that I want to listen to, not that noise. It’s not important.”  

This year marks a decade on morning television for Willoughby and Schofield, an impressive feat for any working partnership, even more so in the field of entertainment.

The secret, Willoughby explained to The Sunday Times, is that they are each other’s pillars of support. Their two families holiday as a group and and the pair spend time together outside of work. “It’s a genuine friendship,” Schofield said.

And it was Schofield who fought so hard for Willoughby to get the presenting job on This Morning alongside him, she added. “He practically put his own career on the line to get me into this job,” she said. “The biggest feminist I know is Phil. The first person that will be standing up screaming from the rooftops would be him.”

Images: Getty

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Hannah-Rose Yee

Hannah-Rose Yee is a writer, podcaster and recent Australian transplant in London. You can find her on the internet talking about pop culture, food and travel.

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