Was Bella Thorne Anorexic? (3 causes of eating disorders among celebrities)

In this blog post, we shall answer the question “was Bella Thorne anorexic?” and look at the different types of eating disorders and their symptoms. We shall also look at the causes of eating disorders in celebrities and also the relationship between depression and eating disorders.

Was Bella Thorne anorexic?

Though she did not mention publicly that she has anorexia nervosa, Bella Thorne disclosed on Instagram that she had been struggling with mental health issues and eating disorders.

She posted several images in which she appeared to be very skinny and captioned them

“This was taken at the end of 2016?- 2017? 2018 was about getting my health back… this is what I look when I am stressed… when I’m stressed it’s hard for me to work up an appetite”

Bella has been very candid and open to her followers when talking about issues affecting her, including being sexually abused at ‌6-14 by someone she was raised with. She also mentioned that she has gained all her weight back, but feels like she needs to get back in the gym and be healthier‌ in general. “Eating the right things (double quarter pounders not included), so my body has the energy it needs to keep moving forward… keep moving forward,” she said.

Who is Bella Thorne?

Annabella Avery Thorne is an American actress, model, singer and writer. She was born on October 8, 1997. She has received several accolades, including a Shorty Award, an Imagen Award, a Teen Choice Award and 3 Young Artist Awards.

She was diagnosed with dyslexia while in grade 1 and overcame it by reading everything she could find, even cereal boxes. 

Bella Thorne’s story

Bella is among the celebrities who are not afraid to tell their stories and struggles. She had a dark childhood that must have been rough on her. She rose to fame at the age of thirteen in the Disney Channel series, shake it up. Many would have thought that this was her happiest moment of her life but this was far from the truth.

We will look at the struggles that she was going through from her father’s death to her being sexually molested and which may have contributed to the development of an eating disorder. She documented them in her book, the life of a wannabe mogul: mental disarray 

She was sexually molested

In her poem, the life of a wannabe mogul: mental dissaray Bella, she revealed that she was molested from the age of 6 to 14 years by a person close to her. She said, “He didn’t have to deal with the countless times he molested me, / he didn’t deal with the countless times I felt ashamed or disgusting.” she has never revealed the identity of the person.

She never reported the sexual assault

In the poem, Bella also reveals that she did not report the matter to the police because she did not trust the legal system. She said, “I don’t want to sit down with the cops and convince them I was raped many times / why should I have to convince someone I was taken advantage of?”

She developed Stockholm Syndrome

Stockholm Syndrome is a condition where the victim of abuse develops feelings towards the abuser/ captor. She revealed that she developed feelings for her abuser and tried to convince herself that she liked it. She said, “The only way I could deal with it I guess, is by loving it / loving this cruel nature of his. Hating what he was doing to me / but trying to convince myself that I loved it.”

Her father died

Bella’s father died in a motorcycle accident when she was nine. In her poem, she pours out her heart and dedicates a part of it to him. It reads, “Why did you leave? when will you be back? why won’t you be at my wedding / or my funeral? they say a parent should never have to burry [sic] their child but a child should never have 2 burry their dad either.”

She saved her family from homelessness

At the age of 13, she got the role in shake it up,and she saved her family from homelessness. She said, “We were about to live physically on the street if I didn’t have that role. We were living off Stouffer’s coupons, and that’s all we had to eat every day. That may not sound like a big deal to everybody, but when you’re a single mom raising four kids with debt and you have nothing to your name, it’s fucking shitty.”

She didn’t know how to love

Bella blamed her parents, especially her mother, for not teaching her how to love. She said, “I hope you know we never learned how to love Or at least I never did. I learned love from you and daddy but since he was gone mostly from you… it’s very hard for me to love properly, to love someone good to me.”

She had a lot of pressure as an actress

Being a Disney star at childhood was exciting, but also a challenging task. This meant that she did not get any privacy nor a chance to become a ‘child.’

She developed body dysmorphia

Being famous at a very young age made her develop body image issues and she started seeking validation from everyone including crickets on the road, she said. This made her develop a condition called body dysmorphic disorder.

She was a victim of bullying

She has been an advocate of anti-bullying and this is because she has experienced it herself. She said, “I was bullied a lot when I was younger. So it’s really close to my heart. I’ve been to lots of schools and I’ve talked to kids about bullying and it’s so sad every time I go there. There are always so many kids that talk about how they’ve been bullied so much in their school, and that breaks my heart.”

She had dyslexia

She was diagnosed with dyslexia which made her struggle in class. She said, “I remember when I started first grade. Right away, it was awful because I couldn’t read as well as the other kids. My brain mixed up letters like ‘B’ and ‘D’ and ‘M’ and ‘W.’ Dyslexia is different for everyone who has it. For me, it just makes it harder to read or write.”

Why are eating disorders common among celebrities?

Celebrities like Bella Thorne are vulnerable to developing eating disorders, as they are always under scrutiny about how they look, their body shapes and their weight. Many have come out to share their stories about their struggle with eating disorders for others to know that they are not alone. 

Lady Gaga confessed that she had bulimia nervosa which affected her voice. Taylor Swift also shared about her struggles in her new Netflix show Miss Americana and Demi Lovato was struggling with binge eating. Many other celebrities have come out to talk about their struggles and are helping other people who are ashamed of their disorders to come out. 

What causes eating disorders in the celebrity world?

The societal standards of beauty

Many people perceive beautiful women to be petite or skinny. The internet today is filled with beautiful women with petite figures and they represent the standards of beauty today. The most famous models and those who model for Victoria’s secret are extremely slender and are portrayed as beautiful or “sexy” and this has been accepted as the standard for beauty.

Digital manipulation

Technology today has allowed us to manipulate pictures to our liking. You can be transformed into a glamorous, thin woman by trimming, shaping and enhancing the photo on the computer.

Increased non-invasive surgeries

Many celebrities have been deluded into getting “perfect” bodies by undergoing surgeries to correct parts of their bodies that they don’t like. Procedures like liposuction and rib removal surgeries are in high demand for celebrities to achieve perfect body shapes. 

Relationship between depression and eating disorders

Major depressive disorder is the most common mental disorder to co-occur with an eating disorder. Bella Thorne has talked about having immense stress that triggers her disordered eating. This is because psychological problems affect our eating patterns and vice versa.

Some behaviours that are brought about by depression cause maladaptive behaviours like restricting, purging or binge eating. One symptom of depression and eating disorders is low self-worth, which contributes to the development and maintenance of both disorders. Depressive symptoms also lead to varying appetite changes, which may lead them to unhealthy relationships with food, the worst of them being the development of an eating disorder.

Bella had mentioned that during that period when she was very thin, she was overly stressed and wasn’t eating, thus the speculation that she was having anorexia nervosa.

Treatment for eating disorders

  • Seek psychotherapy or counselling services. If your child is having trouble with their eating habits, seek help on their behalf
  • Join a support group
  • Practice mindfulness and relaxation techniques


We have looked at whether Bella Thorne had an eating disorder and who she is. We have also discussed what eating disorders are and their signs and symptoms. We have also looked at the causes of eating disorders and why celebrities are at a high risk of developing eating disorders.

We have also discussed the relationship between eating disorders and depression and the treatment options available for eating disorders. Please feel free to comment and ask questions in the comment section below.

Frequently asked questions: Bella Thorne eating disorder

What does Bella Thorne suffer from?

She has had Cystic acne since her early teen years. She had been mistaken for using hard drugs by celebrity blogs when she appeared on the red carpet with acne-prone skin.

What is the most serious eating disorder?

Anorexia has a high mortality rate due to the physical implications it has. While all eating disorders have dire impacts on your mental and physical health, professionals have agreed that Anorexia has the worsts symptoms.

What are the three common reasons why people have eating disorders?

Family history of eating disorder, having other mental disorders, dieting and starvation and stress.

Does body image cause eating disorders?

Dissatisfaction with how your body looks can affect your eating habits and lead to disordered eating and dieting.

What are the 5 unhealthy habits?

Obesity, smoking, excessive drinking, physical inactivity and insufficient sleep


Jantz G., Eating Disorders and the Imperfect World of Celebrity Struggles. Retrieved from https://www.eatingdisorderhope.com/information/eating-disorder/eating-disorders-and-the-imperfect-world-of-celebrity-struggles

Eating disorder hope, Depression and Eating Disorders. Retrieved from https://www.eatingdisorderhope.com/treatment-for-eating-disorders/co-occurring-dual-diagnosis/depression

PsychReel, (March 24, 2022). Did Bella Thorne have an Eating Disorder? Retrieved from https://psychreel.com/did-bella-thorne-have-an-eating-disorder/

Firman T., (February 19, 2020). 30 Celebrities Get Real About What It’s Like to Live With an Eating Disorder. Retrieved from https://www.prevention.com/health/health-conditions/g30996694/celebrities-with-eating-disorders/?slide=7

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