Jan. 5, 2011 — — Ricki Lake weighed 200 pounds when, at age 19, she was cast as the happily heavyset Tracy Turnblad in the 1988 John Waters movie, Hairspray. The now-svelte Lake recalls how, at the time, she was proud of her size.

“Being fat worked, and I think that was what was confusing for me for a long time in my career,” Lake, 42, said.

Today, Lake says she looks and feels better than ever — she’s lost more than 130 pounds from her peak weight and has kept it off for 15 years.

“To have almost 130 pounds on top, I mean, almost twice what I weigh, I can’t fathom what that feels like today,” she said. “Being a size 6 feels better than being a size 24.”

But getting there was far from easy, and to understand her journey means going back to her childhood.

At age 6, Lake saw the musical “Annie,” and it was “life changing.” It was then she said she knew “I wanted to be on stage.”

But it was also at that age that Lake suffered abuse, which she believes was at the root of her intial weight gain.

“I was sexually abused as a child, as a young child. And I think that is what contributed to my being overweight … and obese, in the later years,” Lake said. “I, even subconsciously, did not want to be attractive to men. And it was my way of, you know, protecting myself, I think … and maybe stuffing my feelings with food.”

She said her weight started to “creep up” at about age 9 or 10.

“I was still kind of cute, so I could pull it off, you know,” she said. “Through my adolescence and, you know, later teenage years, I got bigger and bigger and bigger.”

The way she was taught to eat, Lake said, also contributed to her weight gain.

“I had the worst, the worst eating habits,” she said.

Lake said that she didn’t want to blame her parents but added that “we did not sit down as a family.”

Talking about this issue on “Good Morning America,” Ricki Lake mistakenly used the term “juvenile diabetes” when she meant “type 2 diabetes in children.” to read Lake’s statement to “GMA”:

Lake: I Was ‘Stuffing Candy in My Pajamas’

Lake said she became obsessed with food.

“I was a secret eater,” she said. “I remember like, stuffing candy in my pajamas and saying good night and running to my room and wrappers would be under my mattress.”

Meanwhile, her mother, Lake said, was on a diet for most of her childhood — and even while she was pregnant with Lake.

“She was on a cantaloupe diet. She gained 11 pounds,” Lake said. “I was a full-term baby, and I was 5 pounds.”

“That’s what people did then,” she said. “Doctors put people on diets, so I don’t blame her.”

By the time Lake was in college, she had ballooned to her Tracy Turnblad weight.

“I wasn’t really conscious of how out of control I had gotten,” she said.

Lake remembers living in Los Angeles, having lunch with her actress friends, including Jennifer Aniston.

“All of them are having salads with the dressing on the side and, you know, a Diet Coke, and I’m, you know, the one with the cheeseburger and the shake, and the extra fries with gravy on it,” she said.

After “Hairspray” the roles kept rolling in. She was on the television series “China Beach” and played Johnny Depp’s sister in the movie “Cry-Baby.”

It seemed like an “endless flow” of opportunities, Lake said, until it all came crashing to a halt. The excess weight that had served her so well suddenly turned into a burden. Her role on “China Beach” was not renewed, her agent stopped returning her calls and, for a brief time, Lake was homeless.

At 5 feet, 3 inches and a whopping 260 pounds, Lake had hit bottom. She decided then, she said, that it was time to lose the weight, but she did it in a way she would never recommend to others.

“I was starving myself. I mean, it was really not the way to do it, which is why I continue to say I’m not an expert on weight,” she said.

Eating little and exercising daily allowed Lake to shrink from a size 24 to a size 12, and lose more than 100 pounds in a little more than six months, but her extreme dieting came at a price.

“I was fainting on, like, the spot. I’d be standing up and then, black out, and not remember anything,” she said.

Nonetheless, losing the weight, Lake said, brought her career back from the brink. She landed a daytime talk show that ran for 11 years.

She also got married, had two children and got divorced.

Lake made headlines three years ago when she put out a documentary called “The Business of Being Born,” showcasing the home birth of her second son.

After that pregnancy, Lake shed the baby weight and then some. She became about 30 pounds lighter than her prepregnancy weight. When the documentary premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival, Lake appeared on the red carpet in a size 4 dress.

Lake said that second weight loss generated even more attention than her initial 100-pound drop.

“That was like me turning into like, the bombshell,” she said. “People magazine, Us Weekly, Ok! Magazine and Playboy were all wanting me on the cover. So, I mean, they didn’t want me when I was a size 8 on the cover of these magazines, you know? … It was shocking to me.”

Lake ended up showing off her slim figure in a bathing suit on the cover of Us Weekly in 2007.

It was one of Us Weekly’s most popular issues, Lake said, because “it taps into what we all are completely obsessed with, even though we know we shouldn’t be. We all want to know: What did she do to change her body in that way?”

Keeping her body that way, she admits, takes work.

“My body holds on to every part of every, you know, calorie that there is out there,” Lake said.

For Lake, staying slim means eating smaller portions and taking responsibility for her diet.

“If I pig out and eat a big meal, then the next day I’m gonna be a little bit more careful,” she said.

A former “overeater,” Lake said she now feels better when she deprives herself of food.

It’s “a sick, crazy thing,” she said. “Like, when I go to bed hungry, I feel like I’m accomplishing something.”

But has Lake’s strict relationship with food gone too far? Lake says no.

“I’m obsessed with weight (and) that’s probably unhealthy,” she said. “but , no, I do not think I have an eating disorder.”

Adamant that she’s no expert, and even worried that talking about the subject of weight contributes to an unhealthy national obsession with it, Lake is using her celebrity and her personal experience to try to make a dent in childhood obesity through her new program called All Stride, which offers customized meal plans, fitness advice and an online support network.

“It’s a basically a lifestyle program for children,” Lake said. “I want to empower them to get the information themselves.”

Lake said you can’t tell children what to do or they’ll rebel. Instead, she said, “it’s about getting them to want to do it.”

Though losing weight and keeping it off takes commitment and determination, Lake herself is an example of how possible the seemingly impossible is.

“You just have to be consistent,” she said. “And, you know, be a friend to yourself, not be an enemy.”

Talking about this issue on “Good Morning America,” Ricki Lake mistakenly used the term “juvenile diabetes” when she meant “type 2 diabetes in children.” to read Lake’s statement to “GMA”:

Ricki Lake is a brand-new woman with a brand-new body. Today, in part four of Weight Loss Week, the remarkable story of how Ricki finally got a handle on her life and lost those extra pounds one final time.“I started doing (a new routine on) February 7, so it’s (been) just two months and I lost 24 pounds,” former talk show host Ricki Lake told “Access Hollywood.” “I’m a size 6 you know. I mean this is as good as I get basically.”

So what was Ricki’s biggest size?“I was 260 pounds and a size 24. Now I’m 120 something and this is me,” Ricki enthused. “(I’m) less than half my size … This is the thinnest I’ve ever been in my life.”Ricki has been struggling with her weight for nearly 20 years! She was in her full figure prime back in 1988 when she made her film debut in the original “Hairspray.”“I’m big, blonde and beautiful,” she said at the time.

Now after dropping 140 pounds, Ricki’s a new woman.Ricki unveiled her new fit and trim look at the Tribeca Film Festival along with her new documentary “The Business of Being Born,” in which she actually gives birth.So how did she shed those pounds? Ricki hired “Fresh Dining,” a food delivery service and the pounds just melted away. “I went from a 12-14 to a size 6,” Ricki began. “I was nervous about gaining it back.”

Thrilled with her new size, Ricki has had to find new duds.“I’m buying all new clothes. I’m investing in a huge new wardrobe, but it’s every day,” Ricki says of her battle with her weight. “I have become a little obsessed with the scale. I get on the scale every morning to make sure I didn’t gain any weight or maybe I lost more. You want to be well adjusted and not get too extreme.”

Extreme was the year she took off — 1992, before starting her talk show. Then at age 24, Ricki lost over 100 pounds, but she says that time she did it the wrong way.“That was not healthy,” she admits. “I was starving myself. I was fainting. It worked, it was effective, but it wasn’t the healthiest way to do it.”

© Bang Showbiz Ricki Lake

Ricki Lake has lost 20lbs (9kg) after carrying “grief weight” following the death of her husband.

The 51-year-old former talk show host’s second husband Christian Evans died by suicide in 2017 and Ricki recently went on a diet to lose the extra weight she put on after his death.

Ricki – who is currently competing on ‘The X Factor: Celebrity’ – told MailOnline: “I was on a very restrictive diet for almost two months. I just really wanted to change my body. I lost my husband two and a half years ago, to mental illness and death by suicide.

“And for me, I was carrying a lot of that grief in physical weight, and I was really ready to shed it, and so I just took the opportunity, I wanted to come back feeling and looking different, and I feel like I accomplished that.

© Karwai Tang/WireImage FILE: Ricki Lake attends “The X Factor: Celebrity” launch photocall at The Mayfair Hotel on October 09, 2019 in London, England. “It’s like a control thing. The one thing you can control, and it’s empowering for me. And so I just feel a lot better.

“And so watching myself on screen – though I love the show, I think it’s hilarious and so well done and I’m so happy to be a part of it – it’s hard for me to see myself.”

Ricki and Christian – who suffered with bipolar disorder – began dating in 2009 and married in April 2012.

Following the advice of a therapist to cut off contact during one of Christian’s manic episodes, Ricki went on to file for divorce in October 2014.

But he was later sectioned and then entered a treatment facility, and the pair resumed their relationship and eventually moved back in together after his release.

Ricki said: “He wasn’t stable, and he was so fragile. But I was still in love with him, so there was something romantic about it. I wanted to save him.”

However, Christian’s mania returned and he moved out again.

Ricki said: “I was upset, but I wasn’t surprised. I knew he was having an episode, and there was nothing I could do.”

Though she is no stranger to yo-yo-dieting, Ricki Lake‘s recent weight gain has left many worried about the actress’ health.

“She looks as if she’s gained 80 pounds,” Dr. Stuart Fischer, who has not treated the 46-year-old Hairspray star, told Radar Online.

“If she keeps this up, she’ll put herself at risk for 65 life-threatening diseases,” Fischer added.

Ricki in October 2013 (left) and August 2015 (right). (Photo Credits: Getty Images | Splash)

Ricki’s latest weight fluctuation is reportedly due to her recent divorce from her second husband, jewelry designer Christian Evans. The former couple — who tied the knot in 2012 — announced their separation after two years of marriage last October.

RELATED: Lisa Lampanelli on Her 100-Pound Weight Loss — “Keeping it Off is Such a Struggle”

The proud mom — she has two sons, Milo, 18, and Owen, 13 — was previously hitched to illustrator-bartender Rob Sussman from 1994 until 2005.

Ricki and her ex-husband Christian in 2011.

“Every time her weight goes up, she increases her blood sugar and cholesterol to dangerous levels,” Fischer said of Ricki’s newest weight gain.

“Every time she uses a starvation diet, she risks cardiac arrest and stroke. She’s not a kid anymore. Her body just can’t take it,” the doctor added.

The Most Extreme Celebrity Weight Loss Success Stories (and How They Did It)

From Jenny Craig to Weight Watchers, celebrities are hopping on the weight-loss bandwagon and getting paid big bucks to do it. But money aside, many stars are shedding the pounds in pursuit of healthier lives.

With the help of diet and exercise (and in some cases, surgery) these celebs have gone through extreme transformations. Here are the most extreme weight loss transformations of famous celebs. You won’t even recognize one controversial reality star (page 10).

1. Drew Carey

Left: Actor Drew Carey seen carrying a bit of extra weight. | Kevin Winter/Getty Images, Right: Carey looking noticeably thinner. | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

How he did it: cutting back on sweets and beer, staying active

In 2010, Drew Carey realized his love of beer and hearty food had packed on the pounds. Parade says since then, he’s lost over 100 pounds and controlled his diabetes by making sustainable lifestyle changes. Concerning healthy eating, Carey said “I was at a wedding on Saturday, and I ate cake. But 95% of the time, I’m right on the money.”

Next: This ’80s star relied on a meal service to slim down.

2. Soleil Moon Frye

Left: Soleil in 2014 | Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images, Right: Soleil in 2017 | Frazer Harrison/Getty Images

How she did it: daily meal delivery service, mixing up her meals

The Punky Brewster actress packed on the pounds after the birth of her three children. Hiding beneath oversized clothes at events, Soleil Moon Frye realized she needed to take action.

In 2017, she lost 40 pounds using a meal delivery service (Nutrisystem). Now Frye can fit into dresses she wore nearly 20 years ago and credits the variety of food she can eat, explaining she can’t survive on ice water and veggies alone.

Next: This famous actor proves it’s never too late to lose weight.

3. John Goodman

Left: John Goodman carrying a bit of extra weight. | Valerie Macon/Getty Images, Right: A leaner and healthier Goodman. | Valerie Macon/Getty Images

Whether you recall Roseanne or The Big Easy, you’re likely familiar with one of Jon Goodman’s leading roles. If you’ve seen him recently, you also probably noticed his massive weight loss. ABC News says he’s lost around 100 pounds.

After a period of time when he didn’t want to look at himself in the mirror, Goodman credits his weight loss to ending his binge-eating habits and exercising as often as he can. Now, he feels better than ever.

Next: This celeb kickstarted her weight loss on Dancing With the Stars.

4. Ricki Lake

Right: Ricki Lake’s weight gain. | Stephen Shugerman, Right: Ricki Lake’s flattering figure. | Brad Barket/Getty Images

How she did it: dancing, sleep, food delivery

She’s known for her talk show, but Ricki Lake made headlines due to her Dancing with the Stars performances and subsequent weight loss. Shape says she lost 20 pounds and many inches on the show.

Lake also uses a food delivery service to give her portioned meals equating to 1,400 calories a day. And she gets at least eight hours of sleep a night.

Next: This actor looks so different from his time on Parks and Recreation.

5. Chris Pratt

Left: Chris Pratt posing with Anna Farris at an event. | Michael Buckner/Getty Images, Right: Pratt in the hot body of an A-list actor. | Eduardo Parra/Stringer/Getty Images

How he did it: P90X, cardio, drinking water

Fans loved Chris Pratt before he lost weight. But now, the Guardians of the Galaxy star looks better than ever. Men’s Fitness reports he lost around 60 pounds in six months with his extreme workout plan.

Pratt’s workouts include P90X and cardio like running, swimming, and participating in triathlons. And actor doesn’t cut calories; the father of one eats around 4,000 calories a day when he’s training, and he drinks a ton of water.

Next: This weatherman made headlines for his weight-loss surgery.

6. Al Roker

Left: Al Roker early in his career. | Nick Elgar/Getty Images, Right: Roker looking lean and fit. | Lily Lawrence/Getty Images

How he did it: gastric bypass surgery

This well-known weatherman has weighed up to 340 pounds, but those days are behind him. In the early 2000s, Roker had gastric bypass surgery, slimming down to 190 pounds.

It wasn’t smooth sailing from there, though. Roker went through a period of gaining back nearly 40 pounds after the surgery. He got back on the weight-loss bandwagon with a 28-day detox and strict diet.

Next: She won the Grammys but lost the weight.

7. Adele

Left: Adele in 2009. | Jason Merritt/Getty Images, Right: Adele in 2016. | Jason Merritt/Getty Images

How she did it: cut out sugar, quit smoking

When Adele joined the music scene in 2008, she was much heavier and unashamed. Adele told People, “I’d lose weight if I was an actress and had to play a role where you’re supposed to be 40 pounds lighter, but weight has nothing to do with my career.”

After her son’s birth in 2012, Adele quit smoking and cut out 10 daily cups of sugary tea. Her nutritionist cited a “clean diet, with lots of fruit and vegetables, plus lean protein and complex carbohydrates” for Adele’s slimmer figure. Regardless, Adele told Rolling Stone she’d “rather have lunch with friends than go to a gym.”

Next: This “respected” singer looks better than ever.

8. Aretha Franklin

Left: Aretha Franklin before her weight loss. | Timothy Norris/Getty Images, Right: The star performs in a dress that highlights her slimmer figure. | Theo Wargo/Getty Images

How she did it: a mysterious surgical procedure

A few years ago, the iconic “Respect” singer lost a ton of weight — 85 pounds, to be exact. People.com reports Aretha Franklin had surgery, which caused her drastic weight loss.

It wasn’t gastric bypass, however; she didn’t tell the publication what she had done. But Franklin did say the doctors told her this surgery would make her feel 15 years younger, and she certainly looks it.

Next: This funny actor dropped some serious pounds.

9. Jonah Hill

Left: Jonah Hill rocking a husky figure. | Emma McIntyre, Right: Jonah Hill looking fit in a tux. | Francois Durand/Getty Images

How he did it: food journaling, working out with a personal trainer

This celeb’s weight yo-yos for roles. But right now, Jonah Hill looks slimmer than ever. Us Weekly says Hill gained 40 pounds for his role in War Dogs, but he’s since lost the weight by keeping a food journal and listening to his nutritionist. He also got feedback from Channing Tatum, who suggested eating less and getting a personal trainer.

Next: We never expected this reality mama to lose the weight.

10. Mama June

Left: Mama June overweight at a media event. | Jonathan Leibson/Getty Images, Right: Mama June’s shocking transformation. | Paras Griffin/Getty Images

How she did it: a healthy diet, cutting soda

“Mama June” is famous for her reality TV show, Here Comes Honey Boo Boo, which aired from 2012 to 2014. You likely recall June Shannon for her robust figure, but she recently went from 460 pounds to a size 4 (and WE tv documented it). Shannon did it by watching her diet and ditching soda.

Her trainer recommends eating watermelon to satisfy her sweet tooth. And Shannon drinks Propel-flavored water as a low-calorie swap for soda.

Next: This comedian and talk show host looks amazing.

11. Jimmy Kimmel

Left: Jimmy Kimmel rocking a dad bod. | Kevin Winter/Getty images, Right: Kimmel looking like a hot bachelor. | Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

How he did it: weekly fasting

Not all stars lose weight in a healthy way. Jimmy Kimmel tells Men’s Journal he took drastic measures to lose his initial 25 pounds. Since then he fasts for two days each week to maintain a weight of about 180 pounds.

On Mondays and Thursdays, Kimmel eats less than 500 calories by drinking coffee and eating a lot of pickles. On the remaining five days of the week, he eats huge portions of whatever he wants. We don’t recommend this, but it seems to work for Kimmel.

Next: This actress looks like a new person after her weight loss.

12. Jessica Simpson

Left: Jessica Simpson at her highest weight. | YouTube, Right: Jessica Simpson looking slim in black. | Andrew Toth/Getty Images

How she did it: healthy diet, strength training, cardio

During Jessica Simpson’s first pregnancy, she gained 70 pounds, which doesn’t come off easy. But thanks to a healthy diet and lots of exercise, she looks better than ever after having two kids.

Fox News reports she eats healthy and works out five days a week (a mix of strength training and cardio with a trainer for three days each week). She also says she never has a specific goal weight in mind; she just wants to look and feel healthy, which she has accomplished.

Next: This Jenny Craig endorser is known for her weight loss.

13. Kirstie Alley

Left: Kirstie Alley overweight in 2004. | Frederick M. Brown/Stringer/Getty Images, Right: Kirstie Alley after getting in shape. | Jamie McCarthy

How she did it: meal delivery service, lifestyle changes

At 67, Kirstie Alley looks slimmer than ever. Us Weekly reminds us Alley rejoined the Jenny Craig program as a spokesperson in 2014 after gaining back about 30 pounds.

Since then, she’s dropped 50 pounds. Alley accomplished this by making sustainable lifestyle changes instead of quick-fix dieting. “My goal is to keep this and maintain this throughout my life,” she says.

Next: This Gladiator wasn’t always fit for battle.

14. Russell Crowe

Left: Russell Crowe in The Nice Guys. | Warner Bros., Right: Crowe at the Annual American Cinematheque Awards Gala . | Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images

How he did it: bicycling, sword training, farm work

The Oscar winner packed on the pounds for 2016’s The Nice Guys. He told a radio show, “I was the first week of August last year … I’m clawing my way back from that, so I’m about at the moment.”

Crowe, a cycling enthusiast, lost 52 pounds after filming. Known for dramatically changing his weight for roles, the Australian actor has used sword training and work on his farm to get back in shape. He also credits a focus on protein-rich meals.

Next: She lost the weight and her TV reboot recently.

15. Roseanne Barr

Left: Roseanne Barr in 2005. | Mark Mainz/Getty Images, Right: Roseanne Barr in 2015. | Mike Windle/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festival

How she did it: surgical procedures, staying active

The Roseanne star made headlines with her sitcom reboot. But Roseanne Barr also made headlines for her tumultuous weight loss journey, which included gastric bypass surgery in 1998. She told US Weekly she’s “moving more, and eating less.” Barr also openly credits a tummy tuck and breast reduction for her svelte frame.

Between her procedure and dedication to weight-loss basics, Barr is a far cry from her 350-pound frame from the ’90s.

Next: The Voice judge was on a weight roller coaster.

16. Christina Aguilera

Left: Christina Aguilera in 2012, her most difficult and unhealthy year. | Frederick M. Brown/Getty Images, Right: X-Tina rocking curves in all the right places. | Steve Jennings/Getty Images

How she did it: a healthy diet

Back in her heyday of the early 2000s, Christina Aguilera was known for her svelte figure and revealing outfits. Now in her late 30s, her metabolism and unhealthy habits caught up with her.

To combat her gradual weight gain, Aguilera lost 49 pounds with a balanced diet. Gone are corned beef and pancakes, AOL says. Now veggies and lean proteins keep her energy levels high and her weight low.

Next: She’s come a long way from her American Idol debut.

17. Jennifer Hudson

Left: Jennifer Hudson before her weight loss. | AOL, Right: Jennifer Hudson sporting a lean figure. | Larry Busacca/Getty Images

How she did it: Weight Watchers

You may remember Jennifer Hudson from American Idol over 10 years ago. But since then, she’s dropped over 80 pounds and kept it off all this time.

What’s her secret? ABC News says Hudson watches her diet (she was a Weight Watchers spokesperson for several years) and doesn’t give in to tempting comfort foods. She does always have chocolate on hand, though, as this is her one vice to keep her sane.

Next: This actress couldn’t use magic to lose weight.

18. Melissa Joan Hart

Left: Melissa Joan Hart in 2013. | Imeh Akpanudosen/Getty Images, Right: Hart in her 2016 ad for Nutrisystem. | Melissa Joan Hart via Facebook

How she did it: Nutrisystem

Some stars’ health goals become moneymakers. Melissa Joan Hart, famous for her role on Sabrina: The Teenage Witch, lost 40 pounds while representing Nutrisystem, a weight loss program.

The mother of three prioritizes parenting first, and her health goals fall into place after that. “For me, it was important to bond with my child, as opposed to ‘lose the weight,’” Hart told Entertainment Tonight.

Next: This Kardashian has always struggled with her weight.

19. Khloe Kardashian

Left: Khloe Kardashian walking in a fashion show in 2008. | Rob Loud/Getty Images, Right: Khloe’s shocking weight loss. | Angela Weiss/Getty Images

How she did it: a healthy diet, exercise

You may remember Khloe as being bigger than her sisters, but those days are long gone. ET says this Kardashian lost 40 pounds overall by making nutrition and fitness a priority after her painful divorce.

“By keeping positive about your body, your inner health, your mental sanity, your fitness, and what you’re trying to achieve, you’re way more likely to succeed,” she said.

Next: We didn’t expect this pop singer to drop this much weight.

20. Sam Smith

Left: Sam Smith giving “Husky Guy” vibes | Mike Coppola/Getty Images, Right: Sam Smith looking lean and strong on stage | Kevin Winter/Getty Images

How he did it: eating ice cubes; cutting refined sugar, dairy, and gluten

This pop singer started losing weight back in 2015, and he seems to get slimmer every time we see him. Sam Smith lost nearly 50 pounds that year (and 14 of those pounds in just two weeks), says Express Newspapers.

To accomplish this, he cut out dairy, gluten, and refined sugar from his diet, and ate herb-infused ice cubes as a snack. Smith also added weight training and yoga to his regimen.

Additional reporting by Ali Harrison.

Read more: These Are the Exercises Celebrity Trainers Say Aren’t Worth Your Time

Ricki Lake: Grief made me gain weight following death of my husband

She said the pain of the loss led her to gain weight, which she has now succeeded in shedding.

XCLUSIVE TEASER:Movie star ✅Talk show host ✅Emmy Award ✅Now, @rickilake is setting her sights on winning #XFactorCelebrity! Will she impress our Judges tomorrow night? #XFactor pic.twitter.com/5wGQC2CApO

— The X Factor (@TheXFactor) October 18, 2019

Lake is taking part in The X Factor: Celebrity and has been living in the UK for the show.

She wanted to return to the public eye having taken control of her weight, and feeling empowered.

Lake said: “I lost my husband two and a half years ago, to mental illness and death by suicide and for me, I was carrying a lot of that grief in physical weight.

View this post on Instagram

A pint w/my pal @ryanmcelhinney1 celebrating 2 year anniversary of @mcandsonslondon! 🎉#christianevans is celebrating from above, no doubt. 😇 ❤️ #London continues to not disappoint. 😍

A post shared by Ricki Lake (@rickilake) on Oct 17, 2019 at 2:34am PDT

“I was really ready to shed it, and so I just took the opportunity, I wanted to come back feeling and looking different, and I feel like I accomplished that.

“It’s like a control thing. The one thing you can control, and it’s empowering for me.“

Lake has taken part in US series The Masked Singer, and has enjoyed The X Factor experience.

The former talk show host said singing is a different challenge for her, and one she finds cathartic.

She said of her transformation: “I just feel a lot better. And so watching tonight, though I love the show, I think it’s hilarious and so well done and I’m so happy to be a part of it, it’s hard for me to see myself.”

X Factor: Celebrity continues on ITV on Saturdays

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