Hilary Duff's Comments About Body Image Put The Focus On Feeling "Strong" Above All Else

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In a new interview with Byrdie published on Monday, Hilary Duff showed what strong body image looks like. The Younger actor opened up about how she tries to stay active, but what really stood out is the way Duff discussed her own body and how she makes sure she never loses focus of what's truly important — feeling healthy. Far too often, there's emphasis on maintaining a certain size and achieving it a specific way, versus encouraging people to love themselves and ensure they feel good inside and out.

As Duff explained,

"Image is something we're all very aware of because it’s constantly being talked about, which is a little bit disappointing, and then also helps you be very in tune with yourself — your behavior, your body, and your happiness."

She hit the nail on the head. It's about being happy with who you are. Admittedly, it took a long time for the former Lizzie McGuire star to accept her body for what it is. "I struggled a little bit when I was 18 or 19 with food," the 30-year-old admitted to Byrdie. "And wanting to fit into this 'image' of a girl who is not me. But that was such a long time ago."

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Now, Duff cherishes her body and sees how amazing it is, especially after having her first son Luca, and now being pregnant with her second child. Yes, she works "out a lot" and describes herself as "not a 'skinny girl,'" which is totally fine. For Duff, it's about so much more when it comes to her body. She said,

"I’m a healthy girl. I always feel really empowered by what my body can do — having babies, getting pregnant, or swinging Luca around. He’s like 45 pounds, and I’m dangling him by his ankles and chasing him all around. So I’m so grateful that I’m strong and my body’s there for me."

The actor also clarified, "working out is more of a mental health thing for me." She told the publication, "Getting those endorphins pumping through your body is really important for your happiness."

Recently, on July 25, Duff shared an Instagram of her growing baby bump, explaining the difficulties that come with pregnancy. In that same post, she also praised women and how amazing their bodies are. "The boobs are big the belly is big the body is big," she began her caption. "Man.. pregnancy is hard. Giving love to all mamas who make it look effortless... this journey is hard as hell and also incredibly special."

She concluded her Instagram post by recognizing the fact that women create human life and they deserve all of the applause, just like their bodies do. Duff wrote,

"Women are so bad ass, this was just a note to remind myself and remind others how’s strong and beautiful you are! WE GOT THIS."

All that said, it doesn't mean Duff never has an off day or doesn't feel crappy about herself sometimes. That's a normal feeling for most people. "Sometimes I’m crushing it and feeling great, and other times I’m like, ugh," she said.

But it sounds like Duff never allows a time when she's feeling "ugh" to interfere with her healthy mindset. "I really feel like I have a healthy relationship with myself, where I know when I’m being 'bad' or I know when I’m being really 'good' health-wise, and both are necessary for me as part of my lifestyle and happiness, to have balance," she said in the aforementioned interview. "I really try to treat my body well. And my mind. And try to have a healthy outlook on [the public scrutiny]. I’m the only one that can control my relationship with myself, and I want to constantly be in control of it, you know? Whatever 'it' is."

Duff's outlook on her body is such a positive one. She sets a great example for individuals of all ages by emphasizing that the ultimate goal is feeling strong and healthy, not reaching a certain size.