Stronger than ever. After revealing that she was struggling with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) on Dancing With the Stars, Sasha Pieterse opened up to Us Weekly on Tuesday, September 26, about her condition and how dancing is helping her feel like herself again.
The Pretty Little Liars star confessed she has already lost 15 pounds since she started rehearsing for the competition show after her hormonal disorder caused her to gain 70 pounds in two years.
“To be honest here’s the thing, I was exercising like crazy and was eating the best that I could before. This just heightens it,” Pieterse, 21, told Us about shedding those pounds.
“It’s a combination. It’s a combination of me finding out what I have, and then Dancing with the Stars helps me tremendously. Having Gleb [Savchenko] as a partner. He’s amazing,” she told Us. “But just the process in general – how hard we’re working and how healthy I feel. I really feel like myself again.”
In regards to revealing her condition on national television, the actress says it was not easy. “I’ve never really done that before. I’ve never really been on a show like this. I’ve never that experience. Having Gleb and everyone at Dancing with the Stars be so supportive of me and having that outlet means a lot,” she said. “The fact that I can open up and share this with people and hopefully bring awareness to PCOS is really all I can ask for. This has been an amazing experience.”
The PLL star shared that some common symptoms of PCOS are irregular periods, weight gain and difficulty losing weight, and she urges women to go to the doctor and get tested for it.
“There are all these things that seem somewhat normal sometimes depending on your lifestyle, but I feel like you have to just go and get it checked,” she told Us. “If you have a hormone imbalance, it can definitely be PCOS and that can lead to ovarian cancer and breast cancer and thyroid issues and many things later that could’ve been avoided.”
She concluded: “More than half of women have it and they don’t even know. It really is a huge issue that I want to share and hopefully help even one person deal with it.”
Dancing With the Stars airs on ABC Monday at 8 p.m. ET and Tuesday at 9 p.m. ET.
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