The 19-year-old pop star and X Factor judge answers your tweeted Qs about recovering from an eating disorder, her BFFs and who she’s crushing on now.
Q: How have your friends helped you get healthy? @laurabrounstein
A: “I surround myself with people who make positive decisions and who have more interests than wanting to go to clubs and get wasted. My friends and I look out for each other, and I love just inviting everyone over to watch TV. I like Law & Order—except it makes me want to go out and inspect everyone on the street to see if they’re a serial killer!”
Q: What’s it like being the youngest judge on X Factor? @Thelexarlexie
A: “It’s so much fun! I root for everyone. I mean, it’s not the best feeling when you’re watching someone and cringing. But when a person’s confidence is magnetic, I don’t even have to hear her to think, Oh, this girl has got something.”
Q: How do you stay strong and fit? @LucyDanziger
A: “I work out five or six days a week for my peace of mind, not to lose weight. I switch it up. I’ll run a few miles or bike from Santa Monica to Marina del Ray. I also love boxing or, when I’m sore, yoga. Sometimes I’ll do full-out meditations, where I chant with my instructor. It helps me connect to how I’m feeling.”
Q: What did you learn in rehab? @10ddlovato
A: “I’ve spent the past two years getting over an eating disorder and issues like self-harming and bipolar disorder. Unlike a person who doesn’t have these problems, I have to work on this stuff every day. I’m reminded of that whenever I eat or feel down.”
Q: Why did you go public about your eating disorder? @jackierisser
A: “When I was younger, stick-figure thin was in and nobody was talking about eating disorders. I want girls to know that it’s OK when they grow up and their body changes. I want them to be aware that certain things they might do to lose weight can be dangerous—life-threatening, even.”
Q: People never talk about cutting. Can you explain it? @SELFmagazine
A: “There were times I felt so anxious, almost like I was crawling out of my skin, that if I didn’t do something physical to match the way I felt inside, I would explode. I cut myself to take my mind off that. I just didn’t care what happened. I had no fear.”]
Q: How was it to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder? @pauladerrow
A: “Finding out I had a real emotional disorder helped me put together the pieces of the puzzle. I remember being on my tour bus thinking, My life is so awesome right now, but I’m so depressed. Then, a few days later, I’d be on top of the world. It was really confusing. When I got diagnosed, my life made more sense.”
Q: What do you do when you feel bad? @Javistaystrong
A: “I had a really hard day this week. I was traveling, and I didn’t eat healthy or exercise. When I’m tired, I get irritable and frustrated. I used to rule out certain days—like, ‘Ugh, today has been so bad, I wish it were over.’ Now I know that it can get better.”
Q: How does it feel to be a spokesperson for Love Is Louder [the antibullying movement]? @RespectLovato
A: “When I was 12, I was bullied. It wasn’t physical, but sometimes I’d say to the girls, ‘Hit me! What you’re doing verbally and online is so much worse.’ That’s when a lot of my issues spiraled out of control. The things they called me will stick with me for life. But going through that also made me stronger. Mean comments don’t affect me the same way because I’m more confident. If I read something where someone calls me a bitch, I know I’m not, so I laugh at it.”
Q: Are you in a much happier place than in the past? @niallsdotebabby
A: "Definitely. You can choose to work toward happiness or not. I used to expect it to come to me, but it takes more than seeing a therapist once a week. I make time for myself and meditate. And I haven’t used my cell in three months! Subconsciously, it was a crutch. When a room gets quiet, what do you do? Grab your phone! Now I can sit and have conversations with people.”
Hey, Demi! Tell us your favorite…
Day-off plan “Hanging with my sister Madison. We took an aerial gymnastics class. It was so fun and a good workout!” Boy Crush “Joe Manganiello from True Blood.” Fantasy “If I could be invisible for a day, I’d go to Area 51 and try to find some aliens!” Girl crush “Rihanna is by far the sexiest woman on the planet!” Food “I love the Pizookie [deep-dish cookie topped with ice cream] from BJ’s Restaurant.” Place “It feels amazing to go home to Dallas. It brings back so many good memories.” Drink “Greens 3 at Pressed Juicery. I love it because I hate eating my vegetables and I feel better knowing I’m getting so many nutrients.”
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