Gigi Hadid explains her Hashimoto’s disease & why her body has changed so much

Gigi Hadid walks the runway for fashion designer Jeremy Scott

Here are some photos of Gigi Hadid at New York Fashion Week from the past few days – she walked the runway for Jeremy Scott (among others) and she’s been pap’d a lot coming and going from fashion week events and her apartment. Gigi has been modeling all of her life, pretty much, although she didn’t really become a high-fashion runway model until her late teens. She’s 22 years old now and her “look” has changed before our eyes. In her teen years, she still had that “baby fat” look, meaning she had a fuller face and a somewhat curvy/athletic figure, and she’s gotten leaner over the years. Which happens to many young women naturally, but in Gigi’s case, she was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease, which is a thyroid condition. So as Gigi has been photographed at NYFW, I guess people were like “she’s too thin/she looks sick” whatever. And so Gigi took to Twitter to explain and ask for people to settle down:

For those of you so determined to come up w why my body has changed over the years, you may not know that when I started @ 17 I was not yet diagnosed w/Hashimoto’s disease; those of u who called me “too big for the industry” were seeing inflammation & water retention due to that.

Over the last few years I’ve been properly medicated to help symptoms including those, as well as extreme fatigue, metabolism issues, body’s ability to retain heat, etc … I was also part of a holistic medical trial that helped my thyroid levels balance out.

Although stress & excessive travel can also affect the body, I have always eaten the same, my body just handles it differently now that my health is better. I may be “too skinny” for u, honestly this skinny isn’t what I want to be, but I feel healthier internally and am still learning and growing with my body everyday, as everyone is.

I will not further explain the way my body looks, just as anyone, with a body type that doesnt suit ur “beauty” expectation, shouldnt have to. Not to judge others, but drugs are not my thing, stop putting me in that box just because u dont understand the way my body has matured.

Please, as social media users & human beings in general, learn to have more empathy for others and know that you never really know the whole story. Use your energy to lift those that you admire rather than be cruel to those u don’t.

[From Gigi Hadid]

On one level, I roll my eyes when a successful model who is a traditionally attractive young woman with blonde hair and blue eyes tries to act like she’s the most bullied victim in the world. On another level, I get what she’s trying to do, and she has every right to defend herself and explain what’s going on. Most young women experience weight changes/fluctuations in their late teens and early 20s. That happens naturally, with or without a thyroid condition. Add in a thyroid condition and trying to find the balance of how to best treat it, yes, of course she’s going to look differently from one year to the next. But guess what? She’s still a traditionally attractive blonde, blue-eyed woman. So imagine how the rest of us feel.

Gigi Hadid walks the runway for fashion designer Jeremy Scott

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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81 Responses to “Gigi Hadid explains her Hashimoto’s disease & why her body has changed so much”

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  1. OFofOC says:

    If people are attacking your body, I don’t think it matters if she’s blonde hair and blue eyed..drug accusations and such are painful regardless of how you appear.

    I think it’s just as wrong for people to diagnose based on appearance no matter what end of the weight spectrum you’re on. Her hair color, model status or eye color has no bearing on it, imo

  2. Whatabout says:

    I think this was preemptive move on Gigi’s part. At the Brandon Maxwell show I noticed she walked down the runway in a zip up sweatshirt and flowy tulle skirt while all the other models were dressed in skin tight black dresses. It looked odd and off, I wondered if they had her in something and thought she looked too skinny and threw a sweatshirt on her.

    Edit it wasn’t Alexander Wang it was Brandon Maxwell.

  3. Bridget says:

    We have literally seen her mother on camera discussing her incredibly restrictive diet as a model when she was just hitting it big. How many almonds was it that she was allowed to eat?

    • AA says:

      Exactly! There was also that party (partly for Gigi) where she begged her mum for some cake. Her mum also used to warn against playing some kind of sport because her thighs got so big and made her look like a ‘lesbian.’

      I used to watch RHOBH and so think Gigi’s mum has Munchausen by Proxy. Her mum claims to have (had?) Lyme’s disease as well as sister Bella and brother Anwar. Apparently the chances of three people in the one family having it (or their iteration of it) is so insanely minute as to render their claims unbelievable. On the show, the father is portrayed as just letting the false and self-diagnoses go on to keep the peace.

    • Domino says:

      Yolanda on RHOBH just made me sad. I don’t know anything about Gigi or Bella, but with a mom like Yolanda I would definitely be in therapy if I were them.

  4. Alexandria says:

    If she says Hashimoto I’m gonna trust her, nuff said. I take it she has to cut off gluten and I when I cut it off too, I shrank a bit (although weight loss was not my goal). Because I’m already petite, I don’t think my loss seemed as noticeable as hers. It kinda explains why her face is slimmer too. I actually thought she botoxed her round face to be more photogenic (it is her rice bowl after all so that’s fine). This procedure is popular in Asia.

    • Miss Melissa says:

      I have Hashimoto’s. You don’t lose weight, you gain it. It’s not inflammation and water retention. It’s autoimmune. Your body destroys your thyroid and you take Thyroid meds for the rest of your life to replace what no longer functions.

      It’s not magically cured with meds. The meds replace the hormones your thyroid no longer produces.

      And it usually hits women in their late 30s.

      Not buying what she’s selling.

    • noway says:

      I have it too, and got it in my mid 30′s, but my mother had it and was diagnosed in her 20′s. Your autoimmune system is attacking your thyroid, which makes it different from just hypothyroidism. When you first get it you can have bouts of hyper and hypo thyroid issues. I actually yo-yo’d in weight for a while. Then it pretty much destroys your thyroid completely and you are hypo thyroid albeit managed with pills. While your thyroid is still working it can produce some hormones which mess with the medicine amount. If she found out recently it can take a while to get your medicine correct, plus there is a shortage of endocrinologist, and even fewer who know about this disease, because generally you can get people to a pseudo normal level although they might feel like crap. Honestly, her story is plausible. I’ve had the disease now for almost 20 years and had two bouts of my medicine level changed dramatically and trust me those times were awful.

  5. Miss M says:

    Good for her for taking care of her health.
    I was skinny and then I was not and people and Doctors finally took me seriously that sonething was wrong. Hashimoto is a tough one to be diagnosed and to treat it. I wish her well!

  6. Annabelle Bronstein says:

    Didn’t Gigi’s mom Yolanda once say that Gigi has Lyme disease? Or maybe I’m thinking of Bella.

  7. Mimz says:

    I think bullying and body shaming hurts no matter what the person looks like… and being in the spotlight, even more.
    Being blonde, blue eyed, didnt keep many girls from being depressed and becoming addicted to drugs to keep up with other people’s expectations.
    Let’s remember and respect that.

    • isabelle says:

      I’ve been both thin and overweight. Got way more negative comments when I was thin. From men and women. The comments even came from strangers. People hold back a tad bit more when you are overweight but if you are thin….people are constantly commenting on your weight when you start losing it. From men saying I looked better bigger to women telling me to stop losing weight. Women can be particularly vicious if you become smaller than them. I’m back down to my normal weight stage now and had a man the other day tell me, “you look like you are sick, you are losing too much weight”. I’m not that thin btw.. around a size 6 and I still have curves. He said this in a room full of people. Losing weight shaming is prevalent but it isn’t talked about as much as gaining weight.

      • Lori says:

        I am slightly overwheight. I worked really hard a few years ago and became slender- not too thin at all. Yet all my girlfriends would pick on my wheight and tell me to make sure I eat more, make sure it doesnt become unhealthy etc. Every time I saw them my wheight was the subject of debate. It made me so doubtful about my diet that I stopped it and tried eating normally. But “normal” to me is actually too much, so the wheight snuck back on.

        Looking back at photos I looked amazing, and my friends clearly didnt like that I wasnt “the chubby one” anymore. Its one of my biggest regrets, because I cant seem to lose it again.

      • isabelle says:

        Same @lori. It got so bad at point I started eating more to put weight back so the comments would stop. It makes you paranoid that maybe you are losing too much weight. I even have a boss (who is overweight) that constantly makes comments, calls me “skinny” and “Blank, won’t eat it, they eat healthy,” she then will laugh or use that catty woman tone. She will even make the comment, almost daily “well maybe If I would eat like, blank”, and its always in that condescending tone of a voice. Fortunately I have a very encouraging friend who told me when she lost weight, women in particular were supportive at first but become “concerned” when you start looking really good. She often becomes my attack dog when the comments came up, defending my choices. Even on here if you look at comments, thin shamming is more prevalent than over-weight shaming.

      • NLopez says:

        Preach Isabelle! I lost 100 lbs due to illness, and the unnecessary comments just keep on coming. I’m sick of it!

    • Milla says:

      Blue eyes, blonde hair, 180cm tall. Yes, we all get bullied. But when you model, you are judged every day. People mesure you and no one gives a crap about your fat days and PMS and stuff. You get money to look good. So, it’s a profession that is based on judgment.

  8. Tw says:

    A medical diagnosis is the latest PR strategy. It’s the new “exhaustion.” I’m not saying this is total BS, but I’m saving some side eye for this family of chronic Lyme sufferers.

    • psl says:

      I was thinking the same. The rest of her family has Lyme Disease…….riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.

      MAJOR side-eye from me.

    • magnoliarose says:

      I said the same thing below, but it took me some time post it. This gets a nope and a nuh-uh from me.

    • KBB says:

      Seriously. I’d believe her if she didn’t have a mother, brother, & sister who claim to have Lyme Disease. They sound like a bunch of rich people who found a doctor to diagnose them with whatever their mom claims they have. It’s seem statistically unlikely that one family would have so many afflictions.

    • hogtowngooner says:

      Call me cynical, but I agree. A medical condition has long been a convenient way to excuse extensive plastic surgery, drug use and eating disorders in the fashion industry. Since you can’t access medical records, you can’t disprove it. If you question it, you’ll be called a “shamer.”

      Remember a decade or so ago when practically every celebrity who got caught doing something bad all of a sudden checked into rehab? I feel like this is the next step. It’s just another ruse that can’t be questioned and automatically makes them the victim.

    • G says:


      Although I also see a lot of patients who have self-diagnosed themselves with rare diseases. This seems to be the family for it, so it may be that she and her mother genuinely believe that she has it.

  9. Red says:

    I just find it odd that these models always say they have these diseases that make it hard to gain weight. How extraordinarily that it’s always models that have these issues. She was a perfect size in the beginning of her career, until a designer told her to lose weight. So she loses a significant amount, and now it’s only because of a disease, rather than because of the industry. I don’t believe her, but I also don’t think people should be writing rude stuff on her social media.

  10. JA says:

    Didn’t she pose a pic slanting her eyes and mocking Asian facial features? And now she pleads with social media users to be compassionate and empathize with her?!! Yea a big Nope to her and her racist a$$. Sucks being mocked, taunted and insulted huh!? Try being a minority female you privileged twat.

    • SK says:

      Honestly, it was a stupid thing to do but massively overblown. She was imitating the buddha face on the cookie she was holding – having lived in Asia I have seen asian people do the same thing. Racially insensitive and stupid yes, mocking asian facial features in a nasty way, no.

  11. magnoliarose says:

    She is full of it. I am sorry, but she is. They have a million false stories about why they are the way they are, and they are lies.
    How many health excuses can celebrities invent to cover for drug habits? I guess the old tried and true exhaustion is a no go now. Let’s see hmmm Oh the flu was good for a time. Overworked. Stress. Migraines were hot for a minute. I guess they aren’t peddling anxiety anymore or OCD or phobias. If spontaneous cartwheels become a thing, they will jump on it as fast as lightning and blame that for everything.

    Her pupils and glassy eyes tell a different story time and time again and not only that, but she also looks hard and has aged right before our eyes. The rumors are on full blast so no wonder she is telling these tales. Hashimoto’s my fanny.

    As a person who was bullied for REAL stop it. It is a cheap way off the backs of other people’s pain to gain sympathy as a cover. Just so no one will dig a little deeper into the inconsistencies in this foolish woman’s lie. Suddenly she was bullied too. Yes, models have been bullied because of being tall and scrawny at 13 and sometimes weird looking. But it has become everyone’s story now, and I don’t believe it. There is teased. Ok. But true bullying is something very different.

    So everyone who thinks modeling makes an unhappy person whole; it doesn’t. It makes it worse. Happy people don’t abuse drugs. Being pretty doesn’t make you happy. Nor does being thin or rich if the inside is all effed up. I guess Zayn has some ailment that forces him to spend most of his life in the bathroom too.

  12. TBD says:

    Can she tell me the name of her doctor? I was diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease and the endocrinologist refused to start medication. He asked me if I was trying to get pregnant. I stupidly answered no and he refused to prescribe medication. I guess it doesn’t matter that I’m tired all the time, forget words, gained weight, etc.

    • Lorina says:

      Don’t give up. Please.
      There are other doctors out there, and you do need the medication! I had the same problem and if you solely trust doctors and not yourself (when you yourself are the one who knows yourself best), it only prolongs your suffering and can in the end even be life threatening.
      I found a decent doctor by researching other patients recommendations online.
      (By the way, I take t4, t3 and (body identical) progesterone, only the three together helped me, t4 alone didn’t do the trick. I tried progesterone on my own, no doctor wanted to prescribe it, but it has helped me a lot.)

    • Heidi says:

      Things various doctors said to me in Berlin, AFTER the diagnosis:

      You can’t possibly have any symptoms, you obviously have a psychosis.

      Don’t you know that Hashimoto is incurable? Get over it.

      All the advice in books about nutrition is false. You can eat whatever you want.

      I would be grateful for any advice on how to proceed. I do get L-Thyroxin, blood levels look good, but I have lots of symptoms. My concentration and memory problems are so bad that I have to work in a job way below my qualification.

      • Lorina says:

        I stopped listening to doctors alltogether concerning doses, I just get my prescriptions from them. I change doctors a lot to get my prescriptions actually – I don’t give a f*ck anymore in that regard, it’s my life and my health after all, and I want a good life now after all that suffering for years..!
        I don’t listen to the hormone level tests, I solely listen to my body and my symptoms.
        You may need to try out a lot, and learn to listen to your body again (I had forgotten how to)
        - but if you don’t give up, and are a little courageous, I will work out for you in the end. Just listen to yourself, not others.
        The combination of high daily dosages of progesterone (400 mg vaginally), doses of t4 and t3 solely according to my physical feeling / to what my body tells me; and various nutriens like high doses of vitamine D (blood levels should be between 80 and 90 ng/ml) and selenium, zinc and iron and b vitamines have made my life worth living again.

      • clare says:

        Heidi, I had terrible trouble trying to get my mild thyroid problems sorted out and doctors didn’t consider my symptoms important enough to be a problem. I finally went to great naturopath (NOT a homeopath) who, after blood tests and diagnostic tests and a very long interview about my health and stress levels, changed my diet and gave me supplements and I was significantly better in 3 months and fully recovered in a year. I know what to eat and what to avoid and continue to take vitamins and supplements that really help including (for me) Iron zinc, vitamin D, and selenium. I see that Lorina has also quoted these vitamins and they are so important but you need to check that you are deficient otherwise you may not benefit. It is important to find a recommended naturopath and they can be expensive but they are interested in your health and well being and I found that the doctors were just weary of trying to help me and did not think I was sick enough.

      • Lorina says:

        Clare, thank you – you’re right, I forgot to mention that you should do research before you take anything! I should have said that, it’s really important: Nothing should be done or taken without extensive research.

        There are a lot of things to consider, the right amount, the right supplement, the intervals between supplements and t4 or t3 medication and so on.
        I’d be careful with naturopaths though, but then again with doctors, too – let’s just say, I’d be careful with everything, because there is so much nonsense out there, and everything should be researched first, no matter, who says it.

        The most important thing in the end is that it helps you – whatever it is.

        In my opinion though, I’d be very careful to speak about full recovery concerning thyroid problems: it’s very important to specify what exactly you mean, because you can give people the wrong idea.
        It sounds as though you had deficiencies, Clare – and while very common, they are not to be confused with autoimmune diseases. For autoimmune diseases like Hashimoto’s there is no cure. You can live with it, even very well so, but you will never be cured once you have it.
        Clare, you may even have a mild, early form of Hashimoto’s or Basedow’s, but because you reduced the inflammation process significantly with your diet and supplements (vitamin D and selen can help enormously against inflammation, no gluten and milk, too, and progesterone, too), you possibly slowed the destruction of the thyorid down enough to not feel anything. But, IF you do have it, there may be problems in a few years or decades. If you’re feeling well, all is well, and you may never need medication – but I’d still be careful in the long run.
        I hope I haven’t overstepped, Clare. Wish you all the best.

      • oh-dear says:

        and methylated-B shots. They have been amazing for me. I cut out nightshades (huge difference as well). I work with a naturopath, and we check quite a few of the things mentioned above. I do have my day and night cortisol checked quite regularly so that I can identify symptoms when I am feeling off. Remember that with an autoimmune disease your immune system is usually overactive, so you want to give it time to calm down. Relax, takes breaks that feed your soul and find a rhythm that works for you.

    • noway says:

      If you went to an endocrinologist who didn’t give you meds it’s probably because you are borderline. I wish before I started taking a small dose I had tried alternative medicine, because once you start it you are kind of stuck with the medicine route, because your thyroid eventually doesn’t produce any hormones. I would look for a good neuropath, nutritionist, and acupuncturist- there are some really good studies on how effective acupuncture is. If these don’t work quickly enough, try another doctor, because my experience has been they are more than willing to proscribe the medicine.

  13. Sunny says:

    My sister suffered from Hashimoto’s. It is hyperthyroidism. Typical symptoms are Enlarged goiter, her hair starting to thin and eyes starting to bulge. You also lose tons of weight. She went down to 98 pounds. So the weight loss comes BEFORE treatment. She had a choice between surgery or radiation to remove her thyroid which left her HYPO thyrodic. She had to take meds or she would gain weight. I don’t see the enlarged thyroid, the hair loss or the bulgy eyes in Gigi. Everyone is different, but I’m more than a bit skeptical.

    • Lori says:

      I assume she had the resources to hide hair loss though, considering her industry.

    • Lorina says:

      Actually, typically, what you described is Basedow’s disease. Hashimoto’s – normally – is hypothyroidism, but can have episodes with hyperthyroidism. After the thyroid is gone, i.e. after Hashimoto’s or Basedow’s did their destructive work, there is always hypothyroidism, just like you said.
      There is actually a lot of confusion about the diseases among doctors, sadly, and the two diseases get interchanged, so it is quite possible the doctor(s) diagnosed your sister wrong.

      What Gigi described is possible; when you get your medication(s) right, you can lose weight again. It can be harder for some people though, especially if you don’t get the medications you need (and a lot of doctors seem to think that too little medication is better than too much, which isn’t true at all if you study the physiology and pharmacology behind it closely.)

  14. themummy says:

    I have Hashimoto’s disease. I was diagnosed 22 years ago. And it is not a big deal at all if treated properly. Also, it absolutely doesn’t involve being too skinny. If anything it causes weight gain because the thyroid under performs (and sometimes sputters back to life some a bit) and so metabolism is slowed. However, when treated properly, which is very simple to do and maintain, it doesn’t usually affect weight at all. I call attention seeking on this one.

  15. kay says:

    As a poor I wish I could buy a diagnosis and medical help for feeling shit all the time.

  16. jferber says:

    I have Hashimoto’s disease and am properly medicated. I have NOT experienced weight loss, though I sure as hell wish I did. This is a bullshit excuse for her thinness. Why not just say, “Okay, I only eat one asparagus frond a day. That’s what keeps me model thin.” That I would believe and give her props for truthfulness. This reminds me of celebrities saying they only had a nose job for a deviated septum. Own it!

    • phatypopo says:

      I also have Hashimoto’s and was properly medicated but unknowingly walking around with a host of other imbalance/hormone issues caused by my thyroid issues. The thyroid numbers being “right” do not tell the whole story. Only once my other issues (caused by the Hashimoto’s) started becoming too awful to bear did my doctor suggest making a few changes to my medication levels (unconventional ones, but the numbers are not one size fits all), which made my life so much better (also included metabolism improvement and less inflammatory response to foods).

      You can’t throw around your experience as knowledge to discredit someone with something so complex as thyroid disorder. Everyone is different and reading what she wrote I felt she could have been talking about me.

  17. claire says:

    I have a terrible “condition” I guess it is (?) called lipedema. It is much more widely recognized in Europe and barely known about/acknowledged here in the US. It’s basically when your lower body (legs) are disproportionately larger than your upper body. ALL of my weight gain is in my legs, which includes calves, shins and ankles. My upper body is tiny. The weight can’t be dieted or exercised off. I eat an insanely strict diet, exercise on the regular, yet get zero results below the waist. I’d walk around topless all day long but am embarrassed to even show my ankles now. My ankles literally jiggle when I walk and I’m developing cellulite on my lower legs. Wtf?! I hate it and it makes me miserable. It is a progressive condition too. I’d been pretty stable since I was in my early 20s but within the past year, I’ve noticed it worsening. Surgery is common in places like Germany, but I don’t have the financial resources nor the bravery to go through with it. I’m terrified of the idea of surgery. Anyway, sob story over, but it’s a horrible thing. :(

    • Lorina says:

      I’m so sorry, Claire!
      It’s certainly not a sob story. Your story matters and should be heard.
      Sending you hugs.
      (I hope it’s ok for me to offer this: I have been researching the role of hormones for the past 3 years, and just from the top of my head, high doses of body identical progesterone (topically or vaginally or anally) might be beneficial to you, because too much estrogen produces fat and vice versa, and I think I heard something somewhere about lipedema and progesterone being possibly beneficial. If you’re interested, it may be something to research and try out. John R. Lee and Katharina Dalton did a lot of research on progesterone, maybe there is something in there for you too, I don’t know.)

  18. phatypopo says:

    As someone with Hashiamotos, which can either barely affect you on some days or make you feel like your world and body are falling apart on others, I can so understand how you would want to set the record straight. And I can back up what she’s saying here about inflammation. On the other end of the spectrum, my sister had Graves disease (hyper-thyroidism) and in high school people accused her of having a coke problem because she was so thin and her eyes were staring to stick out. It really messed with her, it was so unfair and sure she was really skinny but she can’t even look at photos of herself from that time in her life.

  19. LittlefishMom says:

    I was diagnosed at 13 with the same. Take medication for your thyroid and it levels out. She may have this but I call BS. Unless she also has undiagnosed Diabetes.

  20. EMau says:

    This family likes creating diagnoses and to get PR on a false basis. If she had Hashimoto’s disease, she’d be putting on weight. I don’t understand why these models just can’t come out and say that they diet like mad to be that thin. She was always being told or reminded about her diet and its importance by her mother on RHOBH. Don’t insult the intelligence of people who actually have the disease.

  21. xdanix says:

    Sorry, NO. I like Gigi, but just NO.

    I have the same condition she’s saying she has, and it DOESN’T do that to your body- if anything, it’s the opposite. It makes it incredibly HARD to lose weight.

    You know what DID make my body look EXACTLY like hers has for the last couple years? A long, painful, 5+ years battle with an eating disorder. I’ve thought for a long time she’s looked like she has one- look at her wrists, ankles, and feet. That’s not baby fat disappearing or anything, that’s really, really underweight. There’s also pictures where her stomach looks absolutely concave- not ripped, not fantastically slim with toned abs, just massively underweight and sad.

    I’m not saying this to be mean- god knows, if she IS dealing with what I’ve thought she’s dealing with, I know what she’s going through, as I’ve said above. And I’m sad for her. It can happen to anyone, let alone someone in her industry who took such a torrent of abuse for being so “big” and “overweight”. And she never was- she was always so pretty and healthy! It’s sad to see.