Katharine McPhee poses in a bikini, talks about bulimia and depression


“American Idol” alum Katharine McPhee is the cover girl of “Shape” magazine. The standard “bikini while standing in a pool of water” pose was her choice, and she looks great – bleach job aside. Honestly, the best thing this girl had going for her was her long, beautiful chestnut hair, and now she’s hacked it off and bleached it blond. Why? Anyway, Katharine talks about her 7-year battle with bulimia in the issue, and also how she is dealing with ongoing depression with the help of a support group.

Katharine McPhee opens up about her 7-year battle with bulimia in the February issue of Shape magazine.

“The more I focused on my weight, the worse my bulimia got,” says the American Idol runner-up, 25. “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.”

McPhee says she no longer pays attention to how many pounds she weighs.

“At my last physical, the nurse took my vitals and said, ‘Wow, you must be taking care of yourself! Your blood pressure is perfect. You’re very healthy,’” she says. “Hearing her say that made me feel better then seeing an ‘ideal’ number on the scale.”

While she’s adapting a healthier body image, McPhee still battles depression.

“I’ve tried writing down affirmations, but that doesn’t work for me,” she explains. Every Monday, she attends a women’s group meeting organized by her church where everyone reveals their highs and lows of the week.

“This exercise is so cool because it allows me to reflect on where I am in my life, and also to hear what others are going through,” she says. “When we’re done, I feel more connected to the world and not so lonely. It’s the best way to start my week.”

[From Us Weekly]

It sounds like Katharine is in a happy place these days, although I have to wonder how she kept her issues hidden when she was on TV every week during “Idol.” She always seemed so happy and upbeat, and she looked great. One would have never imagined she was dealing with an eating disorder and depression at the time. Nothing against Katharine, but I always considered that particular season of the show a big joke, with that “Soul Patrol” guy winning. What was his name?

Shape cover courtesy of CoverAwards.

Katherine McPhee Dresses in the Dark

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23 Responses to “Katharine McPhee poses in a bikini, talks about bulimia and depression”

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  1. Lady Nightshade says:

    I know she was on American Idol, but does she actually have a good music career now?

    I’ve seen her in magazines but I’ve never heard she has released anything.

  2. Vajayjay says:

    As usual, the FIRST stop to fame with female celebs is the hair salon- BLONDE HAIR DYE!!!!!! I think its so freakin stupid..

  3. Neelyo says:

    I think every twenty-something aspires to look like Angelica Huston in THE GRIFTERS.

  4. Aviatrix says:

    She looks like she got the Elisha Cuthbert look from like five years ago. The blonde makes her look washed out, I predict nose job is next -bridge is a little wide she’ll tell the surgeon.

  5. Eileen Yover says:

    My husband has it bad for her…but I don’t know what he’ll think of her new ‘do.

  6. lucy2 says:

    It does seem like a very odd mixed message, to talk about body image issues and bulimia, and then to pose in a bikini (retouched photo, of course). It seems like her outlook now is positive and she’s getting better at her issues though.

    I don’t like the blond hair. I thought she was so pretty before, but the blond works against her. She has a nice voice but the music I’ve heard of hers is very generic pop, nothing great.

  7. Just a Poster says:

    And yet she ok’d them to air brush her body.

  8. Obvious says:

    I miss her old brunette hair, she looked adorable. But hey, as long as she’s happy and healthy i won’t complain about how washed out this look makes her.

  9. princess pea says:

    It always makes me sad when I hear a girl talking about her recovery from an eating disorder and she finishes with “and then I lost the weight! Yay!” or some variation. I really hope she isn’t obsessing about her weight, but just saying that you’re over it is not very convincing to me.

  10. Lantana says:

    I think it would be better to profile her in Psychology Today than Shape.

  11. dee says:

    I was never a fan of this one, she always starts talking about her ED when she needs media attention.
    Also, I think photoshopped pics should be banned from magazines that promote fitness and health. Anyone with that program can look great.

  12. Cinderella says:

    She’d probably feel 100% better if she switched her hair back. Bad hair can ruin your life.

    By the way, where is her older husband?

  13. pickelhaube says:

    She’s always been more boring than boring to me, and now every single time I see her with that unflattering hair color I ask “Who the hell is that?” because I cannot tell her from any of the 500 other cookie-cutter D-listers who look exactly like her. And sorry, if you have brown eyes and are not a NATURAL blonde already, you are likely not going to look good with blonde hair. I have never once seen a brown eyed girl with bleached hair that looks good. Not once. Maybe someone out there can pull it off but Katherine is NOT that girl.

    As for her “eating disorder”, I have a feeling she milks it for attention and relevancy. Pretty much every woman in the Western world has some form of disordered eating, she is nothing special or unique, and I get SO F*CKING SICK of these celebs going on about how they love their bodies now (!) and then turn around and allow themselves to be airbrushed to death. Please, spare me. Not that I buy Shape or any other bullsh*t woman’s magazine since all they do is sell insecurity so you’ll buy their advertiser’s products….f*ck that and f*ck this no-name irrelevant b*tch for being a part of it.

  14. Brooke says:

    I like her blonde.

  15. QB says:

    I saw her the other in a morning show and she looked scary skinny and she looke way smaller than she looks on that cover and her arms were super skinny .

    Who do she think she is fooling with the way came out with just excersice.

    Bulimic is binge eating and then doing something to compensate for it , purge or excersice.

  16. WTF?!? says:

    She looks like she’s still suffering from eating disorders. The clavicles and bony shoulders you could cut glass with belie her claims, photoshopping notwithstanding (remember what photoshop did for Rachel Zoe). I love the way these scrawny, passe Hollywood types discuss their current issues in the past tense in a desperate attempt to be relevant.
    Also, her pronated bellybutton screams “tummy tuck”, and she’s a butterface.

  17. snowball says:

    *Record an album? Check
    *Bleach the hair? Check
    *Pose in a bikini? Check
    *Talk about how you battled an eating disorder and are now naturally thin? Check.
    *Talk about religion and how it’s helped in your healing? Check.
    *Leave a little lingering issue (depression) so you can be questioned about it ad nauseum on The View and Larry King Live? Check.

    All that’s left is a rumored hookup with John Mayer and some tabs declaring she got a boob job and she’s made it!

  18. Danielle says:

    The soul patrol dude was Taylor Hicks. lol.

  19. KelBear says:

    Is she the same girl that was in the movie House Bunny?

  20. Cat says:

    Lol I don’t get it either! “I love my curvier body so much I exercise to lose weight!” And mentally, purging vs. exercising to acheive the perfect body can’t be that different.

  21. princess pea says:

    @ Cat – You’re right, for some people it’s not that different. A lady I used to work for had hypothyroidism as a result of excercise bulemia, meaning she would obsessively count the calories she took in and then work out until she had burned more than that. Just a few years this way and she totaled her body’s natural ability to regulate hunger and energy.

  22. Raven says:

    Really unfortunate mag cover in light of her admissions of bulimia. This just encourages young girls to binge and purge, or switch to excessive exercise.