The annual National Women’s Health Week kicks off every Mother’s Day. The organization’s goal is to empower women to make their health a priority. This week has served as a time to help women understand what steps they can take to improve their health.
Although there are numerous celebrities who champion women’s health, here are a few that Shrink Tank wish to spotlight!
1. Lady Gaga
The singer has tirelessly worked on behalf of sexual abuse survivors. Lady Gaga first opened up about being sexually assaulted in 2014. The singer penned Oscar-nominated Til it Happens To You, a song about dealing with sexual assault, with Diane Warren, and she performed it alongside other survivors at the 88th Academy Awards.
Lady Gaga has also been candid about her life-long battle of anxiety and depression. Gaga told Billboard that she’s coped with mental illness all her life, and still deals with it daily. “I’ve suffered through depression and anxiety my entire life, I still suffer with it every single day. I just want these kids to know that that depth that they feel as human beings is normal,” she told Billboard. “We were born that way. This modern thing, where everyone is feeling shallow and less connected? That’s not human.”
2. Emma Watson
Emma Watson is definitely not at Hogwarts anymore. Since being appointed a United Nation’s Goodwill Ambassador, she has continued to blow us away with her empowering words of wisdom and speeches about feminism and gender equality. She continues to fight for equal rights and highlights the value that it brings to the world.
She’s not just speaking to women either. Watson also spearheaded a campaign called #HeForShe which extends a formal invitation to men to join the gender equality movement. Emma claims “gender equality is your issue too.”
3. Jennifer Lawrence
Jennifer has made waves in Hollywood by challenging the unrealistic standard of beauty. Jennifer is saying very loudly that being underweight should not be any woman’s goal, and a healthier realistic standard of weight needs to be Hollywood’s new norm. She is vocal about eating food (real food!) and is sending the message to all women that it is human to do human things like eat (real food!)!
Even early on in her career, Jennifer refused to give in to requests to lose weight for her role in The Hunger Games. She recognized her responsibility as a role model for females of all ages, and demanded instead to play a strong, healthy, beautiful Katniss Everdeen. By playing a powerful (not emaciated) female character, it may have influenced millions of girls and women by challenging their definition of beauty.
4. Daisy Ridley
Hollywood is regularly criticized to creating ancillary roles for women. But in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Ridley’s character Rey isn’t focused on finding romance or needing a man to rescue her. All the arguments that female driven films are not profitable withered with Star Wars: The Force Awakens breaking every domestic box-office record. It currently stands as the highest grossing film in American history and has sequels arriving in 2017 and 2019.
Daisy has also championed positive body image and acceptance for her young fans. In a recent Instagram photo, the 24-year-old actress recently used social media to share a post about self-esteem and the pressures to appear perfect to others on social media.
5. Mindy Kaling
Mindy reminds the media that how she looks will never be as important as who she is. She is a hysterical, smart writer and actress who has authored two bestselling books and created her own comedy series.
Kaling talks about actual health issues. She shares that she tries to exercise regularly due to her family’s history with cardiovascular disease. Every woman would benefit by being motivated to exercise for long term good health, instead of short term weight loss. We salute Mindy Kaling, who in our opinion, is also good for everyone’s mental health as she keeps us laughing with her amazing wit!
Born Ashely Nicolette Frangipane but known by her stage name Halsey, the singer-songwriter has been unapologetic about her background and history of mental illness. In an interview with Billboard, Halsey admitted to considering suicide after her diagnosis and struggle with bipolar. In another interview with Elle, Halsey said that that being a bipolar, bisexual, biracial woman makes her sometimes feel “inconvenient.”
“This plight, like you said, of being the ‘inconvenient woman,’ just comes from people expecting me to…I’m not always going to be agreeable, you know? I’m not always going to be calm,” she said. “I’m entitled to my emotions and, unfortunately, because of the circumstance that I deal with, it’s a little more than other people.”
Adele has been candid about her own body image struggles. In a Sirius XM interview she stated, “I do have body image problems for sure but I don’t let them ruin my life at all and there’s bigger issues going on in the world than how I might feel about myself and stuff like that.” She went on to also declare, “there’s only one of you, so why would you want to look like everyone else?”
The global superstar has also personally struggled with anxiety and panic attacks. In a Q Magazine article, the singer admitted that she often suffers from extreme anxiety attacks when performing in large arenas. She has since shied away from participating in large music festivals, forgoing large payouts for the sake of her mental health and well-being.
Her raw honesty and vulnerability in music and in person make Adele a champion of Women’s health.
8. Kerry Washington
The Scandal star has been vocal advocate for mental health services. She has been open about the importance of therapy in her own life, stating “My brain and my heart are really important to me. I don’t know why I wouldn’t seek help to have those things be as healthy as my teeth. I go to the dentist. So why wouldn’t I go to a shrink?”
Kerry is also a long-time advocate for ending violence against women. Washington has launched several campaigns aimed at ending domestic violence, one of which involved her designing a limited-edition purse and donating the profits to survivors of domestic and financial abuse.
So in honor of National Women’s Health Week, let’s raise our glasses (or wands) to the incredibly fierce and empowering women that continue to champion for women’s health. We salute you.