'Vanderpump Rules' ' Ariana Madix Had a 'Full-Blown Eating Disorder' When She Joined the Show

The reality star said that she's since recovered, but still has "some tendencies toward disordered eating" that she has to fight

Ariana Madix
Ariana Madix. Photo: Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty

Ariana Madix was dealing with a "full-blown eating disorder" when she first joined the cast of Vanderpump Rules, she shared in a new interview.

The reality star, 36, opened up about her past history with disordered eating on her costar Scheana Shay's podcast Scheananigans, telling Shay that she's "grown in size," with a laugh.

"I've grown in literal size, but I don't care as much," Madix said. "I started the show, I feel like, with, like, a full-blown eating disorder."

Madix, who joined the show in 2013 during its second season, said that she used to stop herself from eating, and didn't realize at the time how severe her problems were. But in the years since, she's gained more control over her habits and is in recovery.

"I feel like I have some tendencies toward disordered eating, but at least I'm more now conscious of it and will fight against it to be healthy," she said. "Whereas in the past I was like, 'Just don't eat, just don't eat.' And that was bad."

Madix has previously opened up about her struggles with depression and suicidal thoughts. During a Jan. 2020 episode of Vanderpump Rules, she told boss Lisa Vanderpump that she's been depressed "for a very long time."

RELATED VIDEO: Kelsea Reveals She Struggled with an Eating Disorder: 'It's a Journey, and It's Never-Ending'

And in an episode a month later, while questioning if she should attend a friends' wedding after her boyfriend Tom Sandoval was kicked out of his role as best man, Madix said that she's "emotionally unstable."

"I'm considering driving off the f—ing freeway bridge when I'm driving home at night," she told costars Lala Kent and Stassi Schroeder. "I don't talk to you guys about that stuff … because it's not safe. It's not safe."

Later, talking with Sandoval, Madix said that she often feels like she wants "to leave my life."

Speaking with Shay for her podcast on Friday, Madix said that she's worked on her depression with a therapist and knows how to battle the "waves."

"I think that recognizing it as a thing and allowing it to be what it is has definitely helped with getting better or at least dealing with it as it comes in those waves, those ups and downs," she said.

"[My depression] was probably always there a little bit under the surface, but I would fight against it so hard because I didn't know what to call it. … Putting a name to it has allowed me to be like, 'Right, because this isn't me, it's separate from me, but it's there.' "

If you or someone you know is battling an eating disorder, please contact the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) at 1-800-931-2237 or go to NationalEatingDisorders.org.

If you or someone you know is considering suicide, please contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255), text "STRENGTH" to the Crisis Text Line at 741-741 or go to suicidepreventionlifeline.org.

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