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'Throwing Up Made Me Feel High!' Gabourey Sidibe Reveals Secret Bulimia Hell

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Mar. 8 2017, Updated 6:49 p.m. ET

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For years, Empire star Gabourey Sidibe was trapped in a secret hell of bulimia, depression, and anxiety. Now, the actress is opening up for the first time in a shocking new memoir.

“My body sometimes feels like a tragedy,” she writes in her new memoir, This Is Just My Face: Try Not to Stare. “But I’m trying hard to change my mind about that.”

Indeed, Sibide, 33, has never shied away from attacking her critics. As Radar reported, she has lashed out over fat-shamers online.

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In her book, out in May, the breakout star of the film Precious admits she was always overweight, and tried for years to shed the pounds, with little success.

After her parents split while she was a child, she faced depression, anxiety and bulimia.

“The bulimia stuck around for about three years,” she writes. “Throwing up made me feel high. I felt a release around my head like a halo that made me feel lighter physically and emotionally.”

After what she calls “lots of therapy,” in May of 2016, she opted to have the bariatric surgery.

“My surgeon said they’d cut my stomach in half,” she writes. “This would limit my hunger and capacity to eat. My brain chemistry would change and I’d want to eat healthier. I’ll take it! My lifelong relationship with food had to change.”

Since the procedure, Sidibe tells People magazine she has changed her eating habits, works with a nutritionist, and exercises regularly…including riding a tricycle around the Empire set!

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“The surgery wasn’t the easy way out,” she says. “I wasn’t cheating by getting it done. I wouldn’t have been able to lose as much as I’ve lost without it.”

Sidibe won’t reveal just how big she was, nor will she reveal her goal weight, calling those "private numbers”

“I have a goal right now, and I’m almost there,” she told People. “And then once I’ve got it, I’ll set another. But my starting weight and my goal weight, they’re personal. If too many people are involved, I’ll shut down.”

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