Former American Idol Star Admits Bulimia Battle

With Paula gone and Ellen getting ready to join a cranky Simon, American Idol fans are all a flutter as a new season begins. Just in time, former Idol runner-up Katharine McPhee bares her bikini body for the February issue of Shape, which will be released on newsstands Monday.

In the magazine, she speaks frankly about her seven-year struggle with bulimia. “The more I focused on my weight, the worse my bulimia got,” she says. “Now I’m more easygoing. I stopped fighting myself and became more forgiving of my body. Ironically, the weight came off naturally through exercise, but no dieting.”

When Katharine received the news she made it to the final twelve girls of the competition, she decided it was time to face the eating disorder of bulimia that was ruining her most valuable attribute – her vocal cords. At her worst point, McPhee binged and purged as many as seven times a day.

Now, the American Idol star hopes she can be an example to others struggling with body issues. “Don’t try to be a size you’re not naturally,” advises McPhee.

“The important thing is that you feed your body, eat good food and let yourself have little splurges here and there!”

Eating Disorder Self Test. Take the EAT-26 self test to see if you might have eating disorder symptoms that might require professional evaluation. All answers are confidential.

Find a Treatment Facility Near You

Click on a state below to find eating disorder treatment options that could be right for you.

Where do calls go?

Calls to numbers on a specific treatment center listing will be routed to that treatment center. Additional calls will also be forwarded and returned by a quality treatment center within the USA.

Calls to any general helpline (non-facility specific 1-8XX numbers) for your visit will be answered by Boca Recovery Center, Daylight Recovery Center or another licensed drug and alcohol rehab facility, a paid advertiser on

All calls are private and confidential.

I NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOWI NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE NOW 800-568-9025Response time about 1 min | Response rate 100%
Who Answers?