Harnaaz Kaur Sandhu, the Indian model, and actor who won the 70th Miss Universe crown in 2021, recently opened up about her struggle with body-shaming.
In an interview with an Indian publication, the Miss Universe titleholder said she has been called “fat” on many occasions, both by netizens and online media platforms reporting her fashion activities.
Sandhu said she has been body-shamed online for gaining weight. “I have, of late, experienced it first hand,” she said. “The way people react to a person gaining weight. This is not just about women, but it is about every human being and how they are treated for the way they look. I have been through that. And in fact, I am still going through that experience.”
The model tries her best not to let the negativity faze her. “It can be difficult to change the other person’s perspective. But if you are confident, you believe in yourself then no one can stop you,” she said.
“It is important to remember how we treat people on a daily basis on how they look. We don’t need to feel sorry for them. And no one needs to feel sorry for me, because I am strong enough to take those opinions and ignore them.”
Suffering from a chronic disorder
The model believes that people who are “sensitive” to comments about their bodies can end up “feeling bullied”. Everyone needs to respect each other for who they are. “Your name and your soul are attached to each other and you should be happy and eternally grateful to God for giving you an incredible body. So just love yourself,” she stressed.
Apart from her difficult experience with being body-shamed, Sandhu recently shared about suffering from celiac disease. It is a chronic digestive and immune disorder that damages the small intestine.
According to The Press Trust of India, Sandhu, during an event in Chandigarh, said that “nobody knows about my Celiac disease. That I can’t eat wheat flour and many other things. I am one of the courageous and confident girls who believe that even if I’m fat, even if I’m thin, it’s my body, I love myself.”
Sandhu became the 70th Miss Universe in 2021. She topped a field of some 80 contestants in a pageant that was touched by politics and the pandemic. The pageant show, held in Israel, drew attention after a grassroots Palestinian-led boycott urged contestants to skip the event to protest Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.
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