Jennifer Hudson: How I Found Out I Had a Weight Problem
08/17/2011 AT 08:30 AM EDT
"I didn't even know I was considered plus-sized until I came to Hollywood," the 2007 Oscar winner and Weight Watchers spokesperson, 29, tells September's Self magazine, on sale Thursday. "I thought I was the perfect size!"
That changed on a red carpet, when "an interviewer asked, 'How does it feel to be plus-sized in Hollywood?' I looked around, like, Who is she talking to? Oh, me? I'm plus-sized? In the neighborhood I'm from in Chicago, a 16 is normal. But in Hollywood, everyone looks exactly the same, so I stood out."
Hudson decided to take action when she was pregnant with her now 2-year-old son, David.
"I thought, hold on – why doesn't anybody know I'm pregnant?" she admits. "And I wanted to set a good example for my son."
By sticking to a strict regimen of portion control and exercise, Hudson eventually lost 80 pounds and went from a size 16 to a 6 and says: "I'm prouder of my weight loss than my Oscar!"