Food Network host Valerie Bertinelli opened up in an emotional video Thursday night about an online comment from a viewer that upset her.
She explained that she made the “mistake” of reading the comments on some of her recipes online as she worked on her upcoming cookbook and came across one that got under her skin.
“Someone … decided to point out that I needed to lose weight,” she said, emotional.
“Because see, I don't have a scale or I don't have clothes that I'm trying to put on every day and I don't have mirrors so I don't see what's become of me,” she said sarcastically. “So I needed that help to let me know that I need to lose weight.”
“You're not being helpful,” she continued. “Because when you see somebody who has put some weight on, my first thought is, ‘That person is obviously going through some things.’”
It’s been a tough year for Bertinelli, whose ex-husband, rocker Eddie Van Halen, died from cancer at 65 in October 2020. She and Van Halen were married from 1981 until 2007 and share a 30-year-old son, Wolfgang.
She concluded her Thursday night video that if she could “lose the weight and keep it off, I would.”
“But since I haven't been successful with that my whole entire life — at 61 I'm still dealing with (it). You think I'm not tired of it, lady?” she asked. “Not f---ing helpful.”
In the post caption, she asked, "Aren’t we tired of body shaming women yet?!"
She added that she had planned to delete the video from her Instagram stories "because it’s a little embarrassing and scary to be so vulnerable. But then I realized it was hitting … a ‘good’ nerve with so many of you who were so sweet to dm and share your same vulnerability and struggles.
"We all could use a little more kindness and patience and grace, because we just never know what someone else is going through. So here it is. Not deleting. Owning it. ♥️"
Bertinelli has long been open about her struggle with body image issues and journey to self-acceptance.
In January 2020, she wrote an op-ed for TODAY about how she “used food to avoid sadness” and planned to change.
“With the loss of my parents and dealing with other trials life throws our way, I’ve used food as a way not to feel the sadness or the stress,” she explained. “But by eating something away, all it does is make me feel worse about myself. One of my personal mottos is ‘choose happy.’ But sometimes that choice is really challenging.”
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In March 2020, she opened up to TODAY’s Hoda Kotb about how the process to self-acceptance hadn’t been easy but she tried to practice “treating everybody with kindness.”
When Hoda asked her what she does about trolls, Bertinelli said she tries to be empathetic and “care less.”
“It’s really good practice seeing what trolls are saying about you online,” she said, explaining she recently saw someone call her “chubby.”
“That could sting but I think it has more to do with someone wanting to be seen, be heard, and if they do that, if they say this about me, then someone will notice them,” she explained. “So it made me feel compassion for that person and I can bless them and go, ‘Yeah, I’m chubby but it’s not a bad thing. It’s not a bad thing. And I’m sorry that you’re feeling so much pain so God bless you.’”