Ariana Grande on Body-Shaming Comments: "You Never Know What Someone Is Going Through"

“There are many different kinds of beautiful.”

a photo of Ariana Grande
Photo: Trae Patton/NBC/Getty Images

Ariana Grande is one of the most influential celebrities on social media. With hundreds of millions of followers, the singer has been especially active on Instagram and TikTok recently, posting behind-the-scenes photos and videos while on set of the Wicked musical movie, in which she will play Glinda.

On these posts, however, followers have been constantly bringing up Grande's change of appearance. And no, it's not just her newly bleached hair or her new, more natural makeup look. It's regarding her assumed weight loss—and she can't escape the criticism. In one of her most recent TikTok posts, top comments include everything from, "I just hope you're okay," and, "She looks so different."

According to Grande, this commentary on her body has been happening "over the past decade or longer," and she now feels ready to "join" this conversation.

Yesterday, Grande posted a three-minute TikTok video to "address concerns" about her body, stating that while some of the comments may have been intended to be encouraging, a lot of them send a damaging message.

"I think we should be gentler and less comfortable commenting on people's bodies no matter what," Grande said in the intimate video. "Even if you think you're saying something good or well-intentioned, whatever it is. Healthy, unhealthy, big, small, this, that, sexy, not sexy … we should really work toward not doing that as much."

She continues, explaining that "there are ways to compliment someone" and that expressing opinions on someone's body can be harmful.

"I think we should help each other work towards being safer and keeping each other safer," she explains. "There are many different kinds of beautiful. There are many different ways to look healthy and beautiful."

We definitely sympathize with Grande here. While your intentions may be good, there are many reasons why you should not comment on or compliment someone else's weight loss. It can perpetuate diet culture and stimulate disordered eating, among other things.

Grande then takes a moment to talk about her personal struggles with her body and health, proving exactly why her criticism has been dangerous and misleading:

"I know personally for me, the body that you've been comparing my current body to was the unhealthiest version of my body. I was on a lot of antidepressants and drinking on them and eating poorly, and at the lowest point of my life when I looked the way you consider 'my healthy,'" explains Grande, "but that in fact wasn't my healthy."

"Healthy can look different," Grande said. "You never know what someone is going through, so even if you're coming from a loving place and a caring place, that person probably is working on it or has a support system they are working on it with."

If you're struggling with your health or body image, having a support system is important. Talk with your primary care provider, a therapist or find a registered dietitian who can help guide you on your wellness journey. You don't have to work on self care by yourself.

At EatingWell, we completely agree with Grande's sentiment. One's health and wellness journey is a personal matter and, even for those with celebrity status, no one should feel obligated to share it with the world. And commenting on someone's body, even with positive intentions, can be incredibly harmful for that individual.

Grande said it best: "You're beautiful, no matter what you're going through, no matter what weight, no matter how you like to do your makeup these days, no matter what cosmetic procedures you've had or not, or anything, I just think you're beautiful."

She wrapped up the segment of the video by saying, "You never know, so be gentle with each other and with yourselves." The TikTok has already surpassed 62 million views and nearly 12 million likes, and this time, the comment section is flooded with positivity and love.

Up next: Why It's Actually Rude to Compliment Someone's Weight, According to a Dietitian

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