Kéllé Bryan has admitted she resorted to taking laxatives in a desperate bid to lose weight when she was a member of girl group Eternal.
The singer, 44, confessed she was put under pressure to look a certain way when she joined the band aged just 18 and was riddled with insecurity because she was openly referred to by music bosses as ‘the fat one’.
The Hollyoaks actress made the shock confession on Wednesday’s edition of Loose Women while discussing the worrying rise of celebrities promoting weight loss aids on social media.
Shock confession: Speaking on Wednesday’s edition of Loose Women, Kéllé Bryan admitted she resorted to taking laxatives to lose weight when she was a member of girl group Eternal
Kéllé confessed the pressure to look slim and to conform to a certain body type started from a very young age thanks to her ballet training at the Italia Conti Academy stage school.
She said: ‘It started earlier for me because I went to a performing arts school from the age of 11. I was in a leotard and tights from the age of two or three.
‘But once I started at the school there was a lot of pressure to look a certain way, to conform and to look like a prima ballerina. I wasn’t. I was a healthy black girl with hops and thighs, with boobs.
‘I was really shapely from a young age, I was finding myself as a young woman. But I was told, “If you look like this you’re not going to be successful”.’
Extreme pressure: The singer, 44, confessed she was put under pressure to look a certain way when she joined the band aged just 18 (pictured in 2001)
‘Everybody else looked like that. Some of them achieved it healthily and unhealthily. There were lots of episodes of anorexia and bulimia, which was around…’.
Kéllé admitted it wasn’t until she joined Eternal that the pressure got to her.
The fourpiece – Kéllé, Louise Rednapp (nee Nurding) and Easther and Vernie Bennett – achieved 15 UK Top 20 hits between 1993 and 1999.
She explained: ‘Once I got into the band, there was even more pressure. You’re exposed to this industry where everybody looks like this.
Girl power: The fourpiece – Kéllé, Vernie Bennett, Easther Bennett and Louise Rednapp (née Nurding) (pictured L-R in 1994) achieved 15 UK Top 20 hits
Forced to slim down: Kéllé said, ‘Things were really regimented in those days, we had to lose weight before a video or a photoshoot’
‘We had managers at the time who told us, “Off you go to bootcamp!” Things were really regimented in those days, we had to lose weight before a video or a photoshoot.
‘We were told these are the measures you have to take and we’re going to help you.’
While Kéllé was sheltered from the negative comments pop stars experience on social media these days, she reveals remarks from music industry insiders were just as cutting.
‘I got it from people internally who were were working with, “She’s the fat one in the band.” They’d bring sample sizes and go “Oh, we won’t have anything to fit Kéllé.”
She admitted: ‘I got it from people internally who were were working with, “She’s the fat one in the band.” They’d bring sample sizes and go “Oh, we won’t have anything to fit Kéllé”
Her fellow Loose Women hosts Andrea McLean, Sharon Osbourne and Jane Moore asked Kéllé whether she had ever gone to extreme measure to try and lose weight.
She confessed: ‘Unfortunately I was in that head space where I thought I had to do something about it, I was very isolated. I just used to take stuff to get rid of the weight.
‘I do not recommend it. Please talk to somebody before you go to those kinds of lengths.
‘I did it because I felt like I didn’t have any other choice or anyone to talk to, and I messed up my system. It did not help in any shape or form in the long run.’
Fab foursome: Kéllé was debating weight loss aids with her fellow Loose Women hosts Andrea McLean, Sharon Osbourne and Jane Moore (L-R)
Kéllé’s comments were prompted by the Loose Women ladies discussing their own experience of taking weight loss aids, and the worrying rise in teens trying products they’ve seen celebrities advertising on Instagram.
The debate was sparked by Lauren Goodger being duped into promoting a poisonous drink containing hydrogen cyanide as part of a BBC sting.
In the BBC Three documentary Blindboy Undestroys the World, Lauren was asked to advertise a poisonous drink despite it not even being ready for production.
It was part of an investigation by the show into whether celebrities actually consume the products which they are paid to promote to their followers on social media.
The drink was said to contain hydrogen cyanide, a deadly chemical used in both world wars, including at the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration camp in the 1940s.
Lauren’s fellow The Only Way Is Essex star Mike Hassini, 25, and Love Island contestant Zara Holland, 24, were also filmed during the sting.
They were told among the ingredients of the new drink was hydrogen cyanide – which was used as chemical weapon by the French during the First World War.
Oh dear: The debate was sparked by Lauren Goodger being duped into promoting a poisonous drink containing hydrogen cyanide as part of a BBC sting (pictured)
The chemical was also used by Nazi Germany during the Second World War for disinfection and pest extermination on ships, before they used it in gas chambers.
In the show, Lauren talks about her promoting another product called Skinny Coffee, which she previously claimed had helped her lose 12lbs in three weeks.
But her agent tells the seller: ‘Half these posts you see that people do, they’re not even trying them half the time.’ She adds: ‘I never tried Skinny Coffee.’
The seller then adds: ‘Because we were a bit worried that maybe you’d want to, you’d need to try it, before you mention it – no, not bothered?’
But Lauren replies: ‘No. ‘I’ve even had my own friends message me Laur, can you get me some of that Skinny Coffee, does it work?
‘I’m like, do you not know this by now? And they’re actually going and buying it, and I’m like, you know how this works.’
The reality star went on to film a video clip for the fake drink, which saw her struggling to pronounce the product name, calling it ‘hydrone cydnide’.
Shocker: In the show, Lauren talks about her promoting another product called Skinny Coffee, which she previously claimed had helped her lose 12lbs in three weeks