Before meeting her current nutritionist, Orange Is The New Black star Laura Prepon was a slave to starvation diets and obsessive workouts. She tells all about her scary past in her new book, The Stash Plan.
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After gaining weight and lacking energy while filming That '70s Show in her 20's, Prepon began her descent into dangerous dieting. "I've done just about every diet there is, from Atkins and South Beach to cabbage soup cleanses," she writes. "Caveman diet? Been there, done that. Alkaline diet? Bulletproof coffee? Vegas? Atkins? Yup! I've done it all."
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One day at a celebrity luncheon at swanky Beverly Hills eatery Bouchon, the actress scarfed down cabbage soup while fellow stars dined on French delicacies at the table. A waiter told her she couldn't eat the Tupperware meal in the restaurant. "I was mortified," she says.
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On another diet, she could only eat six crackers her day in addition to tiny portions of weighed food. The 36-year-old ate her "dinner" in the bathroom of the Beverly Hilton during a black-tie event.
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Going to extreme: Prepon received HCG hormone injections in order to burn body fat. "It's just as crazy as it sounds, but I was willing to try anything," she recalls. "When I stopped it, not only did I gain all the weight back, but my hormones were completely out of whack."
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Before shooting her first scene on Orange Is The New Black— a shower scene— Prepon says she starved herself for 40 hours: "My poor body was so confused it didn't know what I was going to do to it next."
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Black magic: Practicing Scientologist Prepon also sought help from a "shaman-type" nutritionist who "shook maracas" and "cast some kind of spell" over her. But it didn't help her lose weight.
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Prepon admits she worked out "like a maniac." "I used to do triple workout sessions in one day; first, a kickboxing class, then a run, and then I'd lift weights at night," she writes.
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The fitness extremes left her exhausted. "My body was so numb that it was literally giving up on me," she confesses. "Every day became a struggle."
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Caffeine addict? Prepon sometimes drank an entire pot of coffee before noon to make it through the day. "My stomach felt as if there were a hole being burned in it from all the churning acid," she writes.
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In July 2012, Prepon found solace through New York nutritionist and healer Elizabeth Troy, who taught her to take care of two important organs in digestion: the gallbladder and liver. Now, she cooks twice a week and eats "healthy, simple meals" throughout the day. "The Stash Plan is going to do for you what it did for me," she promises in the book.