DWTS' Cheryl Burke: "You Don't Have to Be a Size 0 to Be Beautiful"
Friday October 24, 2008
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images; Michael Rozman/Warner Bros.
Dancing With the Stars' Cheryl Burke is sounding off on critics who have claimed she's gained too much weight.
"I was like, maybe I should just starve myself for four weeks just so people would shut up," she said on Friday's Ellen DeGeneres Show. "But at the end of the day ... I'm an athlete. I like to eat, I like to work out, and I like to feel healthy, and I feel healthy."
When DeGeneres told her she looked great, the audience applauded.
"There is so much pressure -- especially starting younger and younger -- for girls to think they have to look a certain way," the talk show host told Burke. "They're making themselves sick."
Earlier this week, season six contestant Louis Van Amstel and professional dancer Maksim Chmerkovskiy spoke out negatively about Burke’s weight gain and that of newcomer Lacey Schwimmer (Chmerkovskiy insists his quotes were taken out of context).
Criticizing a woman's weight "is just a wrong statement to make ... for women, and it's dangerous," Burke said.
"You don't have to be a size zero to be beautiful," she added. "In the world that I may live in right now, you don't have to be skin and bones. You can be healthy and beautiful, and you need to accept that about yourself and feel secure about it."
When Burke admitted that she is a "size four in a dress," DeGeneres praised her.
"That is a normal body and that's what most people's bodies -- if they're lucky -- look like," she said. "I think people would trade you for that body."
Added DeGeneres, "You're a beautiful person and don't hear [criticism] anymore. Don't listen to it."