Slim and smiling on the outside, TV celebrity Mika Brzezinski struggled in secret for years with eating disorders that included anorexia, bulimia,diet pills and excessive exercise. Reflecting on her journey, Mika described herself as "such a mess" in a Feb. 25 presentation at George Washington University to discuss eating disorders. Her speech was part of National Eating Disorders Awareness Week.
Now the popular co-host of the "Morning Joe" show, Mika recalls eating an entire large pizza from Domino’s in secrecy. She would then take diet pills, run up to 10 miles and tell no one about her combination of binge-eating and exercise bulimia.
Mika links her eating disorder to her high school years. At 15, she remembers running six to 12 miles daily and consuming fast food at 7-Eleven or McDonald's.
After continuing her eating disorder throughout college, Mika was told to lose weight during a job interview for a position in TV journalism. While she climbed her way up the career ladder in that field, she says that she continued to alternate starving and gorging, all while exercising excessively
And the message that Mika received from the TV management was clear, reported Mediabistro on Feb. 26. At size eight, she was considered overweight.
I’m sure you’re very talented…I love your family background…Your education is great…But you look terrible. You need to lose some weight, drink a little water. and come back to me in six months.
What to do? It took years, but Mika finally turned to experts for help. Now she's telling her story in a new book: "Obsessed: America's Food Addiction--and My Own" (click for details).
And Mika admits that she still battles the inner voice that tells her she's too fat.
“That was part of the lie, making it look so easy,” she said about staying slim for TV. “That all backs up the sickness.”