- Gina Rodriguez, known for her time on Jane the Virgin, struggles with Hashimoto’s disease.
- She has been dealing with the chronic health issue for over 10 years.
- The starlet went public with her health diagnosis around 2016, about two years after her hit TV show premiered.
Jane the Virgin alum Gina Rodriguez, 38, is an Emmy-nominated actress and beloved TV personality. Not only did she break out on the Hollywood scene with the hit CW show, but she has since become an industry favorite for her work on Not Dead Yet, Someone Great, and more. Aside from her work, Gina recently became a first-time mother and welcomed a son with her husband, Joe Locicero, in Mar. 2023.
Despite her growing acting resume, Gina has suffered from a chronic illness for over a decade of her life. Her struggle with Hashimoto’s disease, an illness she has spoken publicly about, has affected her physical health and self-body image. Keep reading to learn more about Gina’s battle with Hashimoto’s disease, what she’s said about it, and how she’s doing today.
Gina Rodriguez Diagnosed With Hashimoto’s Disease
The proud mother-of-one was first diagnosed with Hashimoto’s disease when she was 26 years old, about four years after Jane the Virgin premiered on The CW. In addition, she was diagnosed with hypothyroidism at age 19, according to SELF magazine. At the time of her diagnosis, Gina called it “the curse of a lifetime,” as Hollywood puts a strong emphasis on physical appearance. When she first found out about her health issues, she wanted to deny them rather then try to find help. “To the core of my being, I know what it’s like to feel like there is no way I can win this, so where do I even begin,” she told SELF in 2018.
The disease affects her physical appearance, as it makes it difficult for the actress to lose weight. Although she would not take her medication and eat foods she was advised not to, according to the outlet, she eventually opted to put her health first. “[Hashimoto’s] affects so many aspects of your life. I’ve had it for so many years…that rebellion of not taking care of myself can’t exist anymore,” Gina said.
What Is Hashimoto’s Disease?
Hashimoto’s disease is known as an autoimmune disorder that primarily affects the thyroid gland, according to the official Mayo Clinic website. The thyroid gland produces a variety of hormones that help many functions in the body, however, when it does not function properly it can wreak havoc on the body. Hashimoto’s often leads to “a decline in hormone production,” which can result in hypothyroidism, according to the health organization.
The Mayo Clinic also noted that anyone can develop the illness, however, it is most common in middle-aged women. Although there is no cure, Hashimoto’s is often treated with hormone replacement therapy, diet changes, and other alternative therapies. Some symptoms of the disease can include fatigue, sensitivity to cold, dry skin, depression, hair loss, and more.
How Long Has Gina Rodriguez Been Sick?
Gina has suffered from hypothyroidism for nearly 10 years, as she is currently 38. As for her Hashimoto’s disease, she has been battling that for about 12 years since she was diagnosed at 26. In 2016, she graced the cover of Health magazine (via E! News) and opened up about her hypothyroidism. “If I can at least walk for 20 minutes a day, it’s extremely helpful for my thyroid gland. Running, boxing, jump rope and hitting the heavy bag are my workout constants,” Gina explained at the time.
She also explained that the autoimmune disorder has been hard on her while working in Hollywood. “It’s always been a battle for me with weight. Keeping weight off is very difficult because my metabolism is pretty much shot, which to me felt like a curse when I was 19. As an actress, I would say, ‘Seriously? In a world that’s so vain, I have to deal with the disease that makes you not keep weight off?’,” she said at the time. “But it actually became a blessing because then I got to represent not only women and Latinas but also women who are dealing with this disease. I’m gluten-free, which is the most difficult thing in the world because, like Oprah [Winfrey], I love bread!”
How Is Gina Rodriguez Doing Today?
Most recently, Gina discussed her health during a July 2022 episode of Rachel Bilson and Olivia Allen’s podcast Broad Ideas. “I got an actor’s curse because it directly affects your metabolism, you know, you’re not producing the hormone that your body needs,” the Miss Bala star explained of her illness. “So you, at times, it can feel like you have a loss of communication with this thing, that spacesuit that you’re in, and you’re just like, ‘Why don’t I have a grasp on shifting what this physical being is?’”
The Chicago native now gives herself positive affirmations to help with her self confidence, according to The Independent UK. “As I bathe, being like, ‘I love you. I love you, elbow. I love you, tetas. I love you, neck.’ I just started touching my body in an appreciative manner,” she explained during the podcast. Gina also explained that when she is able to manage her diet it also affects her body in a positive way. “I should not be eating gluten. I should probably chill out on dairy,” she told Rachel and Olivia.
Gina recently also welcomed her first child, a son, in the early months of 2023. She and Joe got married in 2019 and announced she was pregnant in July 2022. “This birthday hits different,” she captioned the pregnancy announcement video at the time. Now she is fully in motherhood mode and celebrated her first Mother’s Day on May 14, 2023 (watch here).
This story originally appeared on Hollywoodlife