Emma Thompson's actress daughter Gaia reveals anorexia battle and calls illness 'deadly'

DAME Emma Thompson's actress daughter has opened up about her battle with anorexia after the Love, Actually star railed against the film industry's "terrible" eating disorder problem.

21-year-old Gaia – whose father is Emma's husband of 18 years, The Crown star Greg Wise – bravely detailed her progress in an inspiring Instagram post after seeing other people's lockdown transformations on social media.

She wrote: "Many people are posting fabulous bodily changes they have achieved either over the past few years, or over lockdown. The majority I have seen are about weight loss.

"I decided to share something a little different; my journey from anorexia to a healthy body.

"Much of it has been a battle but I’m now 18 months in a stable and happy weight range."

Gaia explained that although she was "terrified" of sharing her progress, she realised it "might… be helpful to another human".

She said: "I know sharing takes me even further out of the shame of an eating disorder.

"Anorexia is the most deadly mental illness that exists in humans and – even on days I STRUGGLE UGH – I’m so proud."

Gaia, who starred alongside her mother in movies A Walk In The Woods and Last Chance Harvey, as well as a West End production of Sweeney Todd, said movinginto her own home had helped with her recovery.

She said: "It doesn’t seem massive but if you had told me 16 months ago I would have been secure, stable and happy enough to look after a home, i probably would’ve slapped you across the face to make you see sense. And yet here we are."

YOU’RE NOT ALONE

EVERY 90 minutes in the UK a life is lost to suicide.

It doesn't discriminate, touching the lives of people in every corner of society – from the homeless and unemployed to builders and doctors, reality stars and footballers.

It's the biggest killer of people under the age of 35, more deadly than cancer and car crashes.

And men are three times more likely to take their own life than women.

Yet it's rarely spoken of, a taboo that threatens to continue its deadly rampage unless we all stop and take notice, now.

That is why The Sun launched the You're Not Alone campaign.

The aim is that by sharing practical advice, raising awareness and breaking down the barriers people face when talking about their mental health, we can all do our bit to help save lives.

Let's all vow to ask for help when we need it, and listen out for others… You're Not Alone.

If you, or anyone you know, needs help dealing with mental health problems, the following organisations provide support:

  • CALM, www.thecalmzone.net, 0800 585 858
  • Heads Together, www.headstogether.org.uk
  • Mind, www.mind.org.uk, 0300 123 3393
  • Papyrus, www.papyrus-uk.org, 0800 068 41 41
  • Samaritans, www.samaritans.org, 116 123

In 2017, double Oscar-winner Emma, 62, spoke up against Hollywood's "evil" obsession with body image.

She said: "The anorexia — there’s so many kids, girls and boys now, and actresses who are very, very thin into their 30s, who simply don't eat. They don't eat.

“Sometimes there are just some subjects that you absolutely have to make noise about because it’s so tedious and it’s gone on and on.”

Emma previously shared that Gaia had suffering a sexual assault on a tube train at age 18 in a bid to raise awareness of consent.

She said: "The thing that upset her most was not the act itself but the fact that she felt cowed enough by it not to call him out.

"And I think that what we suffer as women most from our shame at not being able to say 'Why are you doing this?'"

Emma and Greg, 54, are also parents to 33-year-old Tindy, a Rwandan orphan and former child soldier they adopted in 2003.

For help and support on eating disorders and body image, you can call Beat Eating Disorders on 0808 201 1677 for adults, or 0808 801 0711 if you are under 18.

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