The Blacklist's Heddie actress Aida Turturro has undergone massive weight loss. We've got you covered with all the details along with before and after changes.
Born on 25th December 1962, Aida Turturro is an American actress best recognized for portraying Janice Soprano in the hit HBO crime drama The Sopranos. Currently, she plays the role of Heddie Hawkins in the NBC crime thriller The Blacklist.
Back in 2001, Turturro was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes that has presumably contributed to her weight loss. Turturro later campaigned to increase general awareness about rheumatoid arthritis.
Aida Turturro's Weight Loss - Is It Caused By Diabetes?
Widely remembered for her appearance as Tony Soprano's elder sister Janice on the famous HBO show The Sopranos, Aida Turturro is a woman of impressive courage and versatile abilities both on and off-screen.
Although Janice Soprano may be described as an enigmatic drifter who eventually comes home after a 20-year absence, Turturro is nothing but that.
A humble New York City resident, she's staying true to her origins. Turturro grew up in a family of talented artists, including the prominent cousins, John and Nicholas Turturro.
'The Blacklist' Heddie Hawkins actress Aida Turturro before and after weight loss.
Source: Weight & Skin
She started performing early, featuring in her first movie, True Love, in 1989. A string of roles in big and small screens followed before she secured her role at The Sopranos in 1999 with a long-time pal, James Gandolfini.
Following diagnosis with rheumatoid arthritis at 12 years of age, Turturro is no novice to the world of severe health conditions.
But after she learned in 2001 she's got type 2 diabetes, she admits she stayed in denial for a few years, not understanding the severe medical problems she was facing. This disease is one of the reasons she might have undergone noticeable weight loss.
Today, she is actively involved in the treatment of her diabetes and has focused on a national public outreach program funded by the pharmaceutical firm Sanofi-Aventis, a supplier of long-acting insulin Lantus.
Back in 2007, Turturro paused on the campaign trail to speak to Skill Magazine editor-in-chief Chet Cooper about her upbringing, her profession, and her journey of learning to cope with diabetes.
The actress revealed how she first discovered the disease:
About five years ago it came up in a checkup that I had high sugar in my blood. My doctor put me on an oral medication, but I was basically in denial.
So I found out I had diabetes and I got really upset, and then I basically forgot about it. I didn’t read about diabetes or study it—I guess I just didn’t realize what it meant or what risks it brought.
It was a difficult time for me. Some of my family members were ill and I just wasn’t focused on taking care of myself. I wish I’d gone right away to the Internet, read a bunch of books, gotten on a diet, and lost 30 pounds, but I didn’t. I’ve found there are many people with diabetes who do not take care of themselves.
And now she's trying to teach people, by giving them the value of her experience.
I am trying to get the word out to people before they get too sick. You can definitely live with this disease. It’s a lot of work, but it’s possible.
Generally, one of the reasons people don't take their diabetes seriously is there are no symptoms initially.
In hindsight, Turturro discovered she was beginning to get pretty cranky and exhausted and punchy at times, or she would weep at the drop of a hat. And she's not that kind of a woman at all.
Later, she learned the crankiness came from unregulated glucose levels that would make her sugars go very high or very low, which is pretty common with diabetes.
In diabetic patients, inadequate insulin stops the body from bringing glucose from the blood into the cells of the body to use it as energy. As this happens, the body begins consuming fat and the muscles for energy, causing weight loss.
While diabetes does cause someone to lose weight, it's plausible Aida Turturro lost an unhealthy amount of pounds voluntarily, in an effort to take better care of her physical well-being in her late 50s.
How is Aida Turturro Taking Care of Her Diabetes?
Aida Turturro revealed she frequently checks her blood sugar now. She admitted she's got quite an awful case of diabetes, so she monitors herself every day at every dinner and even when it's time to go to bed.
At bedtime, she uses Lantus, which supposedly works a lot better than the old insulins to maintain the blood sugar throughout the day but based on what she's consuming, she will need to take extra brief insulin with food—then she uses a Novolog insulin pen.
Aida's been trying hard to regulate her diabetes for almost two and a half years. She's a lot happier, a lot healthier, and she sees fewer physicians.
Sometimes I hear people say, “I just don’t like pricking my finger.” I tell them, “You know what, if you continue living with uncontrolled diabetes you’re going to have a lot more pain than pricking a finger. You’re going to be in the hospital and they’re going to be pricking you all over your body. You can see a little blood now or a lot of blood later.”
With diabetes, you have to know what’s going on and you have to write it down.
Turturro revealed she sees a nutritionist as well.
Nutrition is everything—we could talk about food for hours. Eating healthily is different for a diabetic than for someone without diabetes—for instance, someone who’s just trying to losing weight.
If you’re diabetic, you really have to understand what your body does with the foods you eat. Some people think of sugar as just the table sugar you put in your coffee.
They don’t understand sugar means all the carbs, even if you’re eating a healthy carb. Brown rice shoots my blood sugar right up—it’s rice, after all. A glass of milk has 12 carbs.
She works with a diabetic trainer who is assisting her with diet. It's all in portions—what you're eating and how much you're eating.
The actress states it's frightening the number of people with diabetes don't know the process of food and this condition. Among the millions of diabetic patients in the United States right now, more than half are not in charge of their diet.
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Aida believes everyone with diabetes should work with a registered dietitian or diabetic educator, besides their doctor. She said,
Sometimes people tell me their insurance doesn’t cover nutrition sessions, or the education is expensive. So I tell them, “Ask for it for your birthday. Tell your family and friends to save up and give you six training sessions for Christmas. Or don’t go out to dinner for a few nights and go to the nutritionist instead.”
Turturro reckons since this is your life, this is the best way you're going to stay healthy.