Thore is using the experience as the impetus to make her health a priority

By Julie Mazziotta
Updated May 16, 2016 01:00 PM
Credit: Frederick M. Brown/Getty

Whitney Way Thore is on her way to better health.

The star of My Big Fat Fabulous Life was rushed to the hospital after collapsing during a dance-a-thon, and she’s now working on making her health her focus.

“My favorite thing about My Big Fat Fabulous Life is being able to share my life with viewers, and that includes the good, the bad, and everything in between,” Thore, 32, says in an exclusive statement to PEOPLE.

“It also includes the EXHAUSTING, which is how I felt the night of the dance-a-thon when I collapsed.”

“The last six months have been super difficult for me and I’m definitely guilty of burning the candle at both ends. It’s an ongoing journey to practice both self-love and self-care and make my physical, mental, and emotional well-being a priority! (But don’t worry, I’m still here and still fabulous!)”

Thore is known for being a strong, body-confident woman, but it took time for her to get there. She dealt with an eating disorder in her teens, extreme weight gain in college and her 20s, depression and a diagnosis of polycystic ovarian syndrome. At her heaviest, Thore weighed well over 350 lbs.

Now Thore is happy in her body – she did make it big with her “Fat Girl Dancing” video, after all – as she learns to manage her PCOS, something she chronicles in her new book, I Do It with the Lights On, out May 31.

RELATED VIDEO: What Surprised ‘My Big Fat Fabulous Life’ Star Whitney Thore the Most about Discussing Her Weight with Strangers?

“Confidence is a product of action,” she previously told PEOPLE. “It’s not something we’re just born with, it’s not only certain people who deserve it; it’s something you can achieve through action.”

“So get out there and do the things that you love, pursue the life that you want and get out of your comfort zone, and confidence will follow as a result.”

My Big Fat Fabulous Life premieres June 8 at 9 p.m. ET on TLC.