Carnie Wilson Talks Weight, Takes on Tabloid

Carnie Wilson tackles weight rumors and sets the record straight.

March 27, 2008 — -- Even before she entered the spotlight as part of the '90s pop trio Wilson Phillips, Carnie Wilson struggled with her weight.

Her fame made that struggle public and got her dubbed "the fat one" of the group.

Nine years ago she took a very visible step in trying to control her weight when she broadcast her gastric bypass surgery online and became vocal about women and weight loss.

That is why when the National Enquirer recently published a story about her gaining a massive amount of weight and considering a second gastric bypass surgery, it infuriated her.

The tabloid featured a photo of Wilson walking with her trainer and compared it to a photo when she was at her slimmest, 150 pounds. It claimed that Wilson had gained 79 pounds.

"I have not gained 79 pounds. When I look at the picture of me prior to surgery and I see that face and I see that person, I'm so different from her today in so many ways," said Wilson, who weighed more than 300 pounds before her surgery.

The daughter of legendary Beach Boy Brian Wilson said today she weighs 205 pounds, a gain of 57 pounds.

The singer shot down rumors that she would have surgery again to help her slim down.

"It's so crazy. They're saying I was going to get liposuction and have a second gastric bypass to have a baby. It's laughable," she said on "Good Morning America" today.

Wilson said even though she's gained some of her weight back, she doesn't regret having the surgery.

"I'm so grateful that I had that surgery. You know what, it's very hard to be in the public eye and be scrutinized for every pound when there are lies on the cover of a tabloid right now. The number is a lie. It's an outright lie. It's frustrating," she said. "I look at myself back then [when I was larger and] I felt like I was going to die. I probably was going to die. My life was saved."

A History of Struggle

Wilson's weight battle came long before tabloids started documenting her weight.

"It's always been a battle since I was 4 years old. It's always going to be a battle -- surgery, no surgery. This is what I've been dealt. These are the cards I've been dealt," she said.

As a child, Wilson used food to ease the pain of an erratic childhood. It's a habit she carried into adulthood and by the time she was a chart topper, the critics seemed to be more critical of her weight than her singing. She often was compared to her two slimmer counterparts in the group.

"I wanted to look good, damn it, you know? I wanted to look something like them," she said.

By 1992 when the trio disbanded, the then-31-year-old was morbidly obese and faced a life-threatening condition.

"I would be tired a lot. I'd feel sluggish. I felt like I was going to have a heart attack. It really scared me," she said.

A Life-Changing Decision

She opted for gastric bypass and within 16 months of surgery, Wilson was down to 148 pounds. She came on "Good Morning America" just two months later to discuss her outlook.

"I feel a burden off my shoulders. I feel free. I actually feel like I've been released from a cell. I don't obsess about food anymore," she said at the time.

Wilson showed off more than her newfound confidence when she displayed her size 6 body in a 2003 Playboy magazine spread.

After her stunning slim down, Wilson began to gain weight after the birth of her daughter, Lola, in 2005.

"You need to follow certain rules. I fell off the bandwagon when I got pregnant. My eating habits changed," she told Diane Sawyer this morning. "For me, it's about snacking, Diane. Somebody can consume a certain amount of calories all day long. If they don't burn the calories, that equals weight gain."

Her New Goal

Wilson now wants to get back on track and get to a healthy weight range.

"My goal would be to be somewhere between 150 and 170 to keep up a healthy lifestyle, eat as little carbs as I can and just be an inspiration," she said.

The California native said she wants to help others who have had weight problems and added she is becoming more active even though she doesn't love working out.

"When I'm on the treadmill, I'm thinking about lunch. That's the truth," she said. "However, it does make me feel better. The good news is -- these pictures in the tabloids -- at least I'm exercising, I'm making an effort. I'm not shoving cake in my mouth. They're taking photographs of me making an effort of improving my health."

Rather than trying to achieve a certain look, Wilson hopes to encourage people to be healthy, including her daughter.

"I want to be a light of hope for her, not to say, 'you need to be a size 6, my darling,'" she said. "You need to be healthy and be kind to other people and help other people. That's the message I want to give to her."

Wilson shared some advice for others looking to lose weight.

"Progress not perfection. Thin doesn't mean healthy. Fat doesn't mean unhealthy. Try to get to a comfortable weight. Drink a ton of water. Stay away from sugar. Be true to yourself. That's the positive message," she said.

She also had some parting words for the paparazzi.

"Eat the doughnut that I wish I could eat," Wilson said. "And then, you know, cram it somewhere."