Spice Girl Geri Halliwell Reveals She Battled Bulimia

Clive Mason/Getty Images

When you think of the pop music scene of the ’90s, there is no greater force than the Spice Girls. These five talented and outspoken women took over the world with their catchy songs (don’t even try to deny that “Wannabe” is still in heavy rotation on your iPod), over-the-top personalities, and in-your-face messages of girl power and confidence. But it turns out that some of the girls were harboring darker secrets: Geri “Ginger Spice” Halliwell (now Horner) opened up on an episode of OWN’s Where Are They Now (airing Saturday) to reveal a private struggle during a time when the rest of the world thought she “had it all.”

Halliwell candidly revealed how the pressure of being in the spotlight deeply affected her state of mind and overall health. “I felt much more conscious of myself, my body weight,” said Halliwell. “We all used different tools to get by, coping mechanisms. For me was controlling my body weight.” That obsession and desire to control showed itself in strict dieting and exercise, emotional eating, and issues with bulimia. And even worse, it was a battle Halliwell’s fellow Spice Girls were completely unaware of. “I started being bulimic and no one would notice it because your body weight stays pretty much the same. It’s bloody dangerous,” she explained. “I was worried I’d get fat. I would binge and then felt fatter and would make myself sick. It was awful.”

Thankfully, she got the support she needed to recover thanks to friends like fellow British pop singer Robbie Williams and the aid of a 12-step program, and today Halliwell says she has a healthy relationship with food-she even showed off her passion for baking when she won the U.K.’s Sports Relief Bake Off this year. But her eating disorder story is a common one. According to the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA), about 80 percent of people who have bulimia nervosa are female, and about 1 to 2 percent of all adolescent and young adult women will have issues with binging and purging. While many people who suffer from the eating disorder will not see noticeable changes in their weight, NEDA shares some telltale signs you can look out for:

  • Evidence of binge eating, including disappearance of large amounts of food in short periods of time or finding wrappers and containers indicating the consumption of large amounts of food
  • Evidence of purging behaviors, including frequent trips to the bathroom after meals, signs and/or smells of vomiting, presence of wrappers or packages of laxatives or diuretics
  • Excessive, rigid exercise regimen-despite weather, fatigue, illness, or injury, the compulsive need to “burn off” calories consumed
  • Unusual swelling of the cheeks or jaw area
  • Calluses on the back of the hands and knuckles from self-induced vomiting
  • Discoloration or staining of the teeth
  • Creation of lifestyle schedules or rituals to make time for binge-and-purge sessions
  • Withdrawal from usual friends and activities

If you or someone you know is suffering, don’t go through it alone. You can find immediate help available on the NEDA website.

  • By By Lauren Brown West-Rosenthal

She’s a a mum-of-two and in her 40s, but Geri Halliwell proved she’s still got it going on as she took to Instagram.

Sharing a holiday snap, the 45-year-old – who is mum to Bluebell, 11, from her ex partner Sacha Gervasi, and one-year-old Montague, whom she shares with her hubby Christian Horner – showed off her amazing bikini body.

Captioned simply with an emoji, the snap showed the red-haired beauty cradling her son, while rocking a saucy, black two-piece.

. 🤔

A post shared by Geri Horner (@therealgerihalliwell) on Apr 7, 2018 at 3:45am PDT

And her abs were certainly screaming: “Look at me!”

Fans rushed to comment on the photo, as they praised the former Spice Girl for maintaining her figure, with some even suggesting she’d turned back the hands of time like fictitious character, Benjamin Button – who aged in reverse.

“Are you the sister of Benjamin Button maybe? 😂👍🏻” one joked.

“Awesome for a woman on your age,” another said.

“Omg how is it that this many years later you look the same?!” a third commented.

“You look so young!” one added.

Others even urged the singer to bring out a fitness DVD, as they begged her to “share her secret.”

“You look amazing @therealgerihalliwell !! Would you ever consider doing a fitness DVD of some sorts? I loved the yoga ones 🤗🤗💕” one wrote.

The post comes just over a year after Geri gave birth to her son in January 2017.

Before then, Geri and Formula One boss Christian, 44 , had struggled to conceive naturally.

And after failing multiple IVF treatments, Geri admitted she almost gave up on the idea of having another child altogether.

She said: “I wanted another baby and I’d tried an assisted route and it didn’t work.

“I feel for any woman who has that natural biological longing, it’s tough. I’d got to thinking I have a child, my husband has a daughter, and accepting this is our lot.”

But to the couple’s surprise, they managed to conceive Monty naturally, with Geri gushing in an interview last year, “Then Monty came naturally. Bluebell is sweet with him. Helps me change his nappy, pushes the pram.”


One year on, and Geri is loving life as a mum-of-two, and she’s looking fab while doing it, too.

Hello, we’re in full production Sunday lunch. ❤️

A post shared by Geri Horner (@therealgerihalliwell) on Mar 18, 2018 at 5:47am PDT

You go, girl!

Spice Girl Geri Horner became a mother for the second time back in January when she gave birth to son, Montague George Hector. Yet despite the pressures of motherhood, the 44-year-old is back to looking in better shape than ever.

So how has she managed it?

‘I do a gentle amount of yoga and I breastfed up to a point, but either way we need to say: “You’re enough”,’ she told the Mirror.

But Geri was keen to highlight that she doesn’t agree with the amount of pressure put on new mums to get back into shape after giving birth.

View this post on Instagram

Enjoy the sunshine ☀️ thinking of you hug. X

A post shared by geri (@therealgerihalliwell) on May 26, 2017 at 2:23am PDT

‘Even if you’re still curvy and carrying a few pounds after you’ve had a baby, I think let that go. It’s OK,’ she said. ‘Women go through so much, looking after themselves, looking after their families, getting their legs waxed, being a good wife, girlfriend… so many plates spin. Whether you’re a giraffe, a hippo or a flamingo, you’re OK.’

And she made sure to point out that it wasn’t just mothers in the public eye who suffered from these, often unattainable, standards.

‘I think we need to take the pressure off women about how they look and bouncing back after baby weight. It’s not fair, and I’m questioning how helpful it is to say to women “omg you’ve just gone snap back”. Every single body is different.’

We couldn’t agree more. Forget girl power, it’s all about mum power!

Anya Meyerowitz Anya is a freelance editor and journalist with a penchant for coats, shoes and handbags.

The revenge of the carbs

Hardly a day went by without another tabloid image of Geri Halliwell, the former Spice Girl, showing off her lithe, six-stone frame to maximum effect, performing bendy yoga poses on the beach. Hollywood actresses, such as Renee Zellweger and Jennifer Aniston, sashayed down red carpets in slimline dresses, extolling the virtues of cutting out the carbs.

Even men were doing it. Stephen Fry, the actor and writer, Robbie Williams, the pop singer, and Oliver Letwin, the Shadow Home Secretary, cumulatively shed the weight of an entire person by following Atkins. Finally, here was a way to eat cheese, fried sausages and cream-laden omelettes and still lose weight.

The halitosis and potential long-term health problems were a small price to pay. “You die of a heart attack, but so what?” said Bob Geldof at the time, beaming through a mouthful of beef. “You die thin!”

It seemed too good to be true – and now it transpires that it was. Last week Geri Halliwell stepped out at a London fashion party with a new set of curves.

Although no official comment was forthcoming from Miss Halliwell’s agents, it would seem that the rigidity of the Atkins’ no-carb programme was too difficult for the singer to stick to. The mere whiff of a potato and her much-vaunted lost pounds supposedly came scurrying back.

Then there is Robbie Williams, whose commitment to Atkins seems to see-saw from one extreme to the other. Only a month ago, his weight-gain had led to him being dubbed Blobby Williams by the tabloid press. Yesterday, clearly back on the diet, he was pictured showing off a leaner, two-stone lighter physique.

Stephen Fry also seems to have trouble adhering to Atkins. When hosting the British Academy Film Awards in February, he “looked very substantial, with his chins-a-wobble”, according to one audience member. Oliver Letwin, who once shed a stone on Atkins, has been stalking the corridors of power with a slightly heavier footfall of late.

The problem, according to those who are once again tipping the weighing scales after breaking the Atkins regulations with a carbohydrate binge, is that the restrictive diet is dull and nigh on impossible to maintain for any length of time.

“It worked at first and then the weight all came back again with a vengeance,” said Tim Lott, the author and Evening Standard columnist, who put on more than a stone after trying and failing on the Atkins diet on four separate occasions.

“I had increasingly less success each time. Eventually, it stopped working altogether and I ended up heavier than before.

“The test of any diet is if you keep the weight off and if you are able to change your lifestyle permanently. I wasn’t able to do that on Atkins because it just gets boring. I love a full cooked breakfast, but after four days of it I could quite happily have never seen one again.”

Oliver Letwin, who proudly claims not to have eaten a potato for a year, admitted that he had also started putting on weight again after straying from the Atkins path.

“I can’t claim that I haven’t put on weight since I started not to do it rigorously,” he said.

“I still have fruit and a taste of wine and if I go round to somebody’s house and they’ve cooked spaghetti, then I’ll eat that, too. I do get the odd craving and am also perfectly prone to eating an unconscionable number of biscuits. I do occasionally feel desperately inclined to have something other than bacon and eggs for breakfast, but then I go to the House of Commons tea-room, which provides kippers.”

Biscuit binges aside, Mr Letwin is still a firm believer in Dr Atkins’ dietary dictates – so much so that he intends to go back on to a strict low-carb diet to lose his excess pounds.

“The main effect has been that I can fit into all my old suits again,” said Mr Letwin. “I didn’t experience particularly unpleasant side-effects. My wife did not report that I had bad breath, but I did suffer headaches in the early stages.”

Tim Lott is more blunt. He describes the diet as making you feel “as if someone has spiked your water supply with amphetamine sulphate. I was light-headed, dizzy and unable to sleep other than fitfully. My breath stank. You stop enjoying sausages once you eat more than a couple of dozen in under three days.”

Of course, there is nothing in the pages of Dr Atkins’ New Diet Revolution – the diet book that has sold more than 10 million copies worldwide since its publication five years ago – that explicitly condones the consumption of a couple of dozen sausages in under three days.

Therein lies another problem. Atkins might have gained a reputation for being a diet on which followers can eat to their cholesterol-clogged hearts’ content, but that was not the original premise. Traditional sources of protein – red meat, eggs and cheese – are allowed on the programme, but only when balanced sensibly with other low-carbohydrate foodstuffs such as seafood, avocados or broccoli.

Nigella Lawson, the author and television cook, told The Sunday Telegraph: “There is a difficulty with any diet that works by ruling out certain foodstuffs and giving you a free-for-all on the things that you are allowed to eat.

“Two things happen. First, of course you get very obsessed with the ones you are missing out. Second, people overeat what they’re allowed – because they are allowed salami, they are quite happy to eat half a pound of salami between meals. You can really overdo it. The Atkins diet doesn’t teach you about portion control and any diet that doesn’t teach you about portion control is not going to have any lasting value.”

The emphasis on portion control is an important one, given that the Atkins programme, with its assurance that no dieter will go hungry, appeals to a particular type of person. Namely, a greedy one.

“It is a feature of dieting generally,” Ms Lawson adds. “The people who go on diets are the people who like eating more than they need and, therefore, there is a tussle between greed and vanity and, sooner or later, their greed overcomes their vanity.”

It’s a difficult balance to redress and, until that happens, not even a Dr Atkins low-carbohydrate chocolate bar can save us.

Bowl of cabbage soup, anyone?

Trivia /
Fat Slags

  • Casting Gag: Hard to say whether it was intentional or not, but Paige’s weight gain subplot carries an extra layer of subtext when you consider that back in her Spice Girls days, Geri Halliwell wasn’t exactly fat per se, but definitely on the curvier side. After quitting the group she lost a lot of weight and has generally been quite skinny since then.
  • Creator Backlash / Disowned Adaptation: The artist who originally created and drew the strip in Viz hated the film so much that he briefly lost the will to draw the comic (and had to be replaced in the meantime). Viz themselves railed on it.
  • Creator Breakdown: The film temporarily killed the original comic writer’s drive to carry on the series.
  • Creator Killer: Previously William Osborne had been a prolific screenwriter (most notably on Twins and The Scorpion King). Thanks to this movie and the almost-as-despised live-action movie of Thunderbirds (released a few months previously), he hasn’t worked on anything since.
  • Franchise Killer: …or so one would believe from news reports at the time. It was claimed that their creator was so dismayed with the quality of the film (which Viz had no involvement with, having sold off the rights years previously), that he was going to cancel the strip (like so). However, it later turned out that this had been misreported, and it wasn’t cancelled.
  • God Does Not Own This World: Viz had no executive control over the output, and it shows.
  • Romance on the Set: Jerry O’Connell and Geri Halliwell became involved in a relationship together after working together on the film. The couple eventually split up, however, with Halliwell saying that O’Connell was too “immature”.

The Secrets of Celebrity Diet

Every star looks perfect. They have perfect body shapes and cool hairstyles. In fact, they may have tried a lot of different methods in order to keep themselves fit. Dieting will be very important in their lives. As a matter of fact they may not be able to get the contracts if they do not look good!
In fact, everyone is slightly different. There is no universal formula of dieting for all human beings. This is also true for celebrities. They will try various dieting plan in order to find the one which is the most suitable. This process of trial and error can be very tough.
For example, Claudia Schiffer, who is a famous model, is not on any kind of diet. In fact, she has been trying various dieting plan. And eventually it is found that diets do not really work for her. Instead, she finds that a three meals per day plan is the best for her. For each meal, she eats a lot of vegetables and fruits. She also finds that she should never have snacks.
Geri Halliwell also takes this eating plan of three meals a day. Geri has been doing a lot of exercises. She also tried various dieting plan. And she also concludes that the eating plan mentioned is the best for her.
The same eating plan also worked for TV presenter Claire Sweeney, who selected the Weight Watchers diet precisely since it lets her eat things she really loves. She will have no chance to eat the foods she loves if she goes for other dieting plan. Just like the others, she has been trying various dieting plans such as detox plan and Atkins diet. However, she finds that they do not really work for her. She concludes that Weight Watchers diet is always the best for her. As a matter of fact she is still on this dieting plan.
Another famous actress, Gwyneth Paltrow, has also been on a macrobiotic diet plan for years. She did not eat any meat, eggs or dairy products. She stuck to this plan until her pregnancy. Of course she went back to the eating plan again after she gave birth to her daughter.
In the 90s, all people were going for stick figures. However, the trend is that more and more people are now changing their attitudes. Many starts will choose to maintain a healthy balance rather than going for an unreasonable beauty standard. This may not be bad. As a matter of fact a healthy person is always a beautiful person.

Spice Girl Geri Halliwell Opens Up About Her Struggle with Eating Disorder

To the outside world, those in the public eye have it all; the wealth, the fame and the adoring fans. However, many of those living their lives in the full glare of the public eye struggle with their own battles and illnesses, including addiction; and eating disorders are surprisingly common.

Fame and addiction often go hand in hand, as the stresses of life in the spotlight can often be difficult for some individuals to handle. And with the constant media spotlight and the advent of social media, there is growing pressure for celebrities to look a certain way.

Mental Health Problems

Most people think of anorexia when they hear the term ‘eating disorder’ but there are many different types of eating disorders, and not everyone with an eating disorder will be painfully thin. An eating disorder is classed as a mental health problem, and those affected often suffer from low self-esteem or a lack of confidence.

While individuals suffering from anorexia do tend to become incredibly thin because of a restriction in calories, other eating disorder sufferers can hide their illness because their weight does not fluctuate as much. Those with bulimia, for instance, tend to have a steady weight. This is because they go through periods of binge eating followed by purging where they will make themselves sick or take laxatives in a bid to rid their bodies of the excess calories they have consumed.

Secret Eating Disorder

Former Spice Girl Geri Halliwell has opened up about how she was affected by bulimia during her time in the band. Most people will be shocked to hear how Geri, or Ginger Spice as she was known, was suffering from crippling body issues. She said her state of mind was deeply affected by being in the public eye, adding, “I felt much more conscious of myself, my body weight. We all used different tools to get by, coping mechanisms. For me was controlling my body weight.”

Geri admits that her fellow band members were completely unaware that she was struggling with an eating disorder. She said, “I started being bulimic and no one would notice it because your body weight stays pretty much the same. It’s bloody dangerous. I was worried I’d get fat. I would binge and then felt fatter and would make myself sick. It was awful.”

This is common among sufferers of bulimia, and loved ones often have no clue that someone close to them is affected.

Help and Support

Luckily for Geri, she did manage to get help for her eating disorder, and she had many friends who helped her through this tough period in her life by providing her with much-needed support. She joined a 12-step fellowship programme and learned how to have a healthy attitude towards food.

Unfortunately, many individuals never get the help they need because they do not know how to access it, or their loved ones continue to be oblivious to the problem until the very late stages.

It is important to be aware that eating disorders can have a devastating impact on those affected, in terms of both mental and physical health. Nevertheless, treatment is available, and early intervention is key.

A Growing Problem

With the advent of social media and ‘selfies’, there is growing pressure on people to look good, and many youngsters are becoming more body-conscious at a very young age. This is leading to increasing numbers developing eating disorders. According to statistics from NEDA (National Eating Disorders Association), eighty per cent of people with bulimia are female, with between one and two per cent of all young women having some type of issues with binge eating and purging.

Spotting Eating Disorders

It is easier to spot the signs of anorexia because those affected tend to lose large amounts of weight and will be more careful about what they eat. Nonetheless, because the weight of those with bulimia tends to be quite steady, loved ones often miss the tell-tale signs. It is important, then, to be on the lookout for the signs of eating disorders such as bulimia.

Since bulimia sufferers tend to binge eat, they may leave evidence behind, such as food wrappers in bins or under beds. Noticing a large amount of food missing may also indicate a problem.

Parents and carers should also be on the lookout for teens that leave to use the bathroom very soon after eating. Those with bulimia may try to purge themselves of food straight after eating. You may notice the signs or smells of vomiting after your teenager has been to the bathroom. Many will turn the water taps on full to mask the sound of vomiting.

Another common sign of eating disorders is an obsession with exercising. Those who are compelled to control their body weight may become rigid about an exercise programme and will keep to it regardless of whether they are feeling ill or tired. For example, they may insist on heading out for a run, even when the weather is very bad.


  1. Spice Girl Geri Halliwell Reveals She Battled Bulimia (Shape)

MEL B has suggested that eating disorders were so normal in the Spice Girls that she only really noticed when her fellow band members had shrunk “dramatically”.

The singer, who insisted she never suffered herself, opened up on Loose Women today about failing to realise that “a few of the girls” had lost a lot of weight “in a short space of time”.

5 Mel B has suggested that eating disorders were so normal in the Spice Girls that she didn’t notice her bandmates were suffering until they had shrunk ‘dramatically’Credit: refer to caption.

During a discussion with Ruth Langsford, Janet Street-Porter and Saira Khan on whether it’s healthy to weigh yourself most days, the Spice Girl, 43, opened up about about how she didn’t feel the same pressure to be a certain size as some of her bandmates.

She said: “Within the group there were definitely a few eating disorders going on. And a few of the girls have been very open to talk about it.”

Ruth asked her if she had been “aware of them as her friend” and the star replied: “I think I became more aware as years went on. When you see your friends’ weight go up and down dramatically in a short space of time.”

Mel didn’t specifically reveal which of Victoria Beckham, Mel C, Geri Halliwell and Emma Bunton she was referring to.

5 The singer described ‘a few’ of the Spice Girls, pictured here in 1997, suffered eating disorders during their late 1990s heydayCredit: Getty – Contributor 5 Yesterday Geri Halliwell, Mel C, Mel B and Emma Bunton announced in The Sun they were reuniting for a huge tour

However, Mel C has previously spoken about her own struggle, while Geri has revealed she had bulimia.

The Leeds-born star insisted she didn’t feel the same “pressure” to lose weight back then, saying: “It was probably a northern thing, and because I’m from a dancing background so I was fit.”

Melanie revealed that these days she is very into exercise. The star added: “I do 300 crunches a time.”

Yesterday, she revealed on Loose Women the door is open for Victoria after the The Sun exclusively revealed the remaining four of the girls would be going on tour.

5 Mel B said on the show yesterday that the door is still open for Victoria Beckham to joinCredit: Rex Features

Her remarks on the show came shortly after Gino D’Acampo left Loose Women fans in stitches when he mistook a discussion on “masturdating” for something much ruder.

The Italian chef was convinced the panel had been talking about masturbating on the popular ITV show earlier today.

Shortly after sitting in between stars Ruth Langsford, Mel B, Janet Street Porter and Saira Khan, the TV foodie, 42, said: “You were discussing masturbating earlier?”

5 Gino D’Acampo thought the panel had been discussing masturbating not “masturdating” earlier on today’s showCredit: ITV

As the panel, studio audience and those at home laughed at his question, Eamonn Holmes’ wife explained to him that they had in fact been talking about “masturdating” – the new trend for people to go out alone, such as to the cinema or a restaurant.

Janet then innocently asked him: “What do you like do on your own?”

Gino told her he liked to masturbate, leaving everyone in stitches once more.

Despite it being his 23rd appearance on the show, Gino – who was on the programme to promote his new cookbook Gino’s Italian Adriatic escape – also hilariously asked “is this live?”


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At the end of his interview, during he had told Mel B about is seafood linguine recipe, the Italian star begged to stay for their debate on “throuples” or three-person couples.

Those watching at home tweeted their amusement at his funny interview, with one sharing: “#LooseWomen bring back gino he should be on longer.”

Another commented: “@Ginofantastico is crackers, you’ve got to love him haha @loosewomen #Gino #loosewomen”

If you, or anyone you know, needs help with an eating disorder, visit Beat, www.beateatingdisorders.org.uk, 0808 801 0677

Mel B says she hopes Victoria Beckham goes to at least one concert despite not knowing why she didn’t join the Spice Girls reunion tour

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Spice Girls singer Geri “Ginger Spice” Halliwell is candidly sharing her battle with bulimia for the latest installment of the OWN network’s Where Are They Now? series.

In the episode airing on Saturday at 10 p.m., Halliwell, 44, details living a double life of sorts. As the the Spice Girls shot to stardom in the mid-90s, Halliwell grew obsessed with her appearance, and the glare of the spotlight only made things worse.

“I felt much more conscious of myself, my body weight,” Halliwell says. “We all used different tools to get by, coping mechanisms. For me was controlling my body weight.”

READ: Geri Halliwell Shares Spice Girls Memories, Says She Was ‘Mesmerized’ by Victoria Beckham

Unbeknownst to her fellow group members, Halliwell was trapped in a cycle of dieting, “comfort eating,”and purging.

“I started being bulimic and no one would notice it because your body weight stays pretty much the same,” the British pop star explains. “It’s bloody dangerous.”

With the help of 12-step meetings, Halliwell was able to beat her eating disorder. She’s now passionate about baking, having won the U.K.’s Sports Relief Bake Off earlier in the year, and no longer acts out with food.

MORE: New ‘Wannabe’ Video Promotes Important Female Issues: See How the Spice Girls Reacted!

Halliwell, who is a mom to a 10-year-old daughter named Bluebell, loves to share pics on Instagram, doing everything from enjoying birthday cake, to baking some goodies of her own.

View this post on Instagram

tea and birthday cake ,amazing birthday 😌

A post shared by geri (@therealgerihalliwell) on Aug 6, 2016 at 8:55am PDT

View this post on Instagram

Making crackle cakes 😜

A post shared by geri (@therealgerihalliwell) on Jun 1, 2016 at 10:09am PDT

View this post on Instagram

Carrot cake 😚

A post shared by geri (@therealgerihalliwell) on Jun 17, 2016 at 10:34am PDT

WATCH: Spice Girls Tease Fan Party on 20th Anniversary of ‘Wannabe’: ‘You’re All Invited!’

Geri halliwell weight loss

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