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Romantic Husband Keeps 39-Year Valentine's Day Tradition Alive for Wife with Dementia

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Romantic Husband Keeps 39-Year Valentine's Day Tradition Alive for Wife with Dementia

A romantic husband from Texas has bought his sweetheart’s favorite chocolate candy every Valentine’s Day for the past four decades—and he’s never missed a year, even while she’s been in an assisted living facility with dementia.

Ron Kramer first met his wife, Donna, when he knocked on her door while selling insurance on January 2, 1979. Ron told ABC affiliate KOAT that when Donna came to the doorstep dressed in a robe and Big Bird slippers, and it was enough for him to come back a few days later to invite her and her daughter on an outing.

“I was really sexy!” Donna made sure to tell KOAT.

As they got to know each other, Ron asked Donna (months in advance) what kind of candy she wanted for Valentine’s Day. Donna told him she liked the dark chocolate cremes from Buffet’s Candies, and Ron went off to the Albuquerque area shop.

Once there, the clerk told him if he kept the box and brought it back the following year, he’d only have to pay for the candy.

The couple married just five months after meeting, KOAT reports, and since then, Ron, 77, has made sure to keep his Buffet’s box nice and safe in its hiding place in his closet all year, only to retrieve it once February comes around.

“That’s why I’m going to keep him. He’s a keeper,” 74-year-old Donna told the news station. “I married him years ago, and I love him as much today as I did then.”

Donna makes sure not to indulge in all of the chocolates in one sitting though—she limits herself to one chocolate a day, and it usually lasts her three months until May (just in time for their anniversary!). Ron is now paying some $41 for the chocolates, up from the $13 he coughed up back in 1979. But he doesn’t mind, as long as it makes Donna happy.

“It’s awful good candy,” Ron told KOAT. “It’s worth every dime of it.”

After facing a flurry of health problems in recent years, such as a stroke due to an aneurysm and two battles with breast cancer, Donna was diagnosed with dementia in 2014 and moved into an assisted living facility a year later. While Ron says it was the “saddest day of his life” watching his wife move out, he’s visited her every day since, bringing along small gifts such as a bottle of Coca-Cola, fruit and gum. Of course, their Valentine’s tradition has stayed strong.

“I made a commitment, and the commitment’s gonna be for the rest of our lives,” Ron told KOAT. “I’ve been with her. I’ll never leave her.”

Donna still has her longterm memory, as of now, but the disease will worsen over time. Ron keeps that in mind every day.

“She’s going to forget who I am,” he told KOAT. “So enjoy every minute you can have with them while they still remember you.”

Lena Dunham on the Moment She Felt Jack Antonoff 'Slip Away' as She Prepared for Hysterectomy

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Lena Dunham on the Moment She Felt Jack Antonoff 'Slip Away' as She Prepared for Hysterectomy

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Lena Dunham is opening up about the emotional process of undergoing a total hysterectomy at 31 — and how it affected her relationship with then-boyfriend Jack Antonoff.

In a harrowing essay published in the March issue of Vogue, the former Girls star chronicles the process from start to finish, explaining that she made the decision in the hopes of ending her crippling endometriosis-related pain. After “desperately” trying to manage a “new level of pain” from August to November, Dunham says she finally checked her into the hospital and refused to leave “until they stop this pain or take my uterus.”

“My family just wants to see me happy again,” she recalls. “They are, for the first time after all my shenanigans, truly scared, and my father checks my breath as I sleep, leaning close to my chest. I apologize weakly for what they are witnessing — someone who hurts too much to express themselves, who can’t help but be a nuisance at best and a terror at worst.”

Though Antonoff, 33, was also supportive, Dunham says the situation wasn’t easy on the couple.

“My beautiful partner, who has seen me through so much pain with compassion and care, has to be away for work, and I can feel us growing slowly apart, since life is so determined to display its full complexity right now,” she says. “I am surly and distant. I offer nothing.”

“He reminds me again and again that I am still a woman and still alive,” she continues. “But I also know that soon — for so many reasons that have nothing to do with my uterus — we’ll slip away from each other and I will face everything I am losing in impossibly tiny step.”

Reps for Dunham and Antonoff confirmed to PEOPLE in January that the couple had split after over five years together, with a source sharing that the breakup was “amicable.” The two met in 2012 after being set up on a blind date by Antonoff’s sister Rachel and comedian Mike Birbiglia.

Days later, Dunham briefly addressed the breakup during a livestream on Instagram, revealing that she was still wearing a ring that Antonoff had given her.

“I’ll always wear it because love is a really cool, powerful, eternal thing,” she said. “It doesn’t have to be defined the way that we, in Western culture, define it as beginnings and ends.”

“Things can be, ‘You know what, you’re a drop of water, and then you reenter the ocean,’ ” she continued. “Anyway, I really love you all. I’m really thankful for the support. I’m really thankful for the love.”

15 Sugary Drinks That are (Almost) as Bad for You as Soda

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15 Sugary Drinks That are (Almost) as Bad for You as Soda


15 Sugary Drinks That are (Almost) as Bad for You as Soda

Demi Lovato Says She Quit Dieting: 'I Gained a Little Weight but I'm Happier'

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Demi Lovato Says She Quit Dieting: 'I Gained a Little Weight but I'm Happier'

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Despite what the titles of her hit singles “Confident” and “Sorry Not Sorry” might indicate, Demi Lovato struggles with body positivity like so many of her Lovatics fan base.

“It’s a daily battle. Some days I feel great and some days I don’t feel great. And sometimes it’s periods of times,” the singer, 25, tells PEOPLE. “I stopped dieting and have gained a little weight so it’s been a struggle but at the same time, I’m happier because I’m not restricting myself from certain foods and I’m no longer food shaming myself.”

Lovato, who recently launched her third capsule collaboration with Kate Hudson‘s activewear company Fabletics, told fans and social media followers in January via Twitter that she has “given up dieting and in exchange has “given up the chronic stress” of food shaming herself.

“I think that’s something in our society we get caught up in diet culture. Every commercial on TV is either about a weight loss pill or piece of fitness equipment or it’s all food-based,” says Lovato, who credits Brazilian jiu-jitsu, which she has been practicing for two years, as her go-to workout and source of empowerment.

RELATED: Demi Lovato’s Swimsuit Selfies Have Helped Her Take the Power Away from Her Online Haters

“As someone recovering from a food disorder, it’s something that I want to put out there that you don’t have to diet in order to be happy. I don’t think I’ve heard that message out there in the public and of course, it’s important to be healthy and everything in moderation is fine,” Lovato shares.

Her tweet about no longer dieting was specifically timed, according to the Tell Me You Love Me hitmaker.

“I wanted to put that message out there for other people especially with the new year coming in because it’s very triggering for people that are in recovery because everything is about weight loss,” Lovato explains.

Adding, “Because new year’s resolutions are about going to the gym and it’s really important that there’s somebody out there to speak up and say, ‘Hey your weight doesn’t define your self-worth and it definitely doesn’t define your beauty inside and out.’ ”

RELATED GALLERY: From Bikinis to Bedhead: See All of Demi Lovato’s Sexiest Social Media Snaps

After candidly discussing her eating disorder in her YouTube documentary, Simply Complicated, the Grammy nominee reveals a positive update on her recovery.

“I think every day I work towards a better version of myself. It’s recovery so I don’t think it’s something that there’s a cure or anything like that,” Lovato says. “I work towards a better life. And I’m definitely in a great place.”

RELATED: Demi Lovato Is Offering Free Mental Health Counseling to Fans on Tour: ‘I’m Here For Them’

Honest about body positivity and the own struggles with her eating disorder, Lovato is now embracing her curves with bikini and one-piece-clad selfies on social media.

“I think posting sexy pictures are so empowering and liberating,” she says about never hesitating to share sultry photos.

“Anytime you can put yourself out there the more empowering I feel. Also it doesn’t hurt when you look good and you have a good bathing suit on and then a cute guy likes your picture. Doesn’t hurt,” she shares.

Khloé Kardashian Flaunts Her Baby Bump in Form-Fitting Jumpsuit for Lunch Outing

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Khloé Kardashian Flaunts Her Baby Bump in Form-Fitting Jumpsuit for Lunch Outing

Here’s to the ladies — and their babies — who lunch.

Khloé Kardashian, who is nearly 30 weeks into her pregnancy, headed out for a meal on Monday with Kris Jenner and Scott Disick.

As she left Nobu in Malibu, California, the first-time mom showed off her growing belly in a fitted spandex jumpsuit. Her all-black ensemble also included a light sweater and dark sunglasses.

Being pregnant also didn’t stop Kardashian from wearing sky-high heels with fur straps.

As Kim Kardashian West and fellow new mom Kylie Jenner have recently welcomed their baby girls into the world, that leaves the Revenge Body star, who is expecting a baby boy, as the next KarJenner sibling to become a parent.

 

“[Khloé] can’t wait to be a mom,” a source told PEOPLE in January after the birth of the star’s niece Chicago — Kardashian West and husband Kanye West‘s third child. “She is excited about being pregnant, but can’t wait to meet her baby. She is also excited about her upcoming baby shower.”

Kardashian and NBA star boyfriend Tristan Thompson, who have been dating since September 2016confirmed their pregnancy in December, months after PEOPLE first broke the baby news back in September.

The Cleveland Cavaliers power forward, 26, also has a 1-year-old son named Prince Oliver from a previous relationship with his ex-girlfriend Jordan Craig.

The Good American mogul previously admitted that her pregnancy “puts so many things into perspective” in her life.

“People say once you have a baby your life just begins and you’re going to realize everything you were doing was nonsense, but honestly I’m so happy that this is happening in my life right now,” she explained.

“They always say, like, when you’re ready [you’ll know] … I feel so ready,” added Kardashian. “I feel the timing really is perfect and I do feel like it’s going to be so exciting, everything that’s about to happen.”

What Is Manuka Honey—and Why Is It So Good for You?

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What Is Manuka Honey—and Why Is It So Good for You?

Healthy foodies have fallen head over heels for manuka honey, a type of honey that hails from New Zealand. Pronounced "MAH-nooka," it's named after the manuka bush, from which bees gather nectar and pollen. In turn, these bees produce manuka honey, explains Frances Largeman-Roth, RD, nutritionist and author of Eating in Color, who recently went to New Zealand to learn about manuka honey. 

RELATED: 9 Surprising Beauty Uses for Raw Honey

Honey in general has long been praised for its antibacterial properties. But manuka honey is thought to be an even stronger infection fighter, and some studies suggest that manuka honey's benefits extend to treating skin problems and complications from diabetes.

To find out what all the buzz is about, we looked into the research on manuka honey benefits and spoke to experts about where to find it, how it's produced, and if it really is the next trendy superfood.

What is manuka honey?

“All honey has some antibiotic qualities,” Largeman-Roth tells Health. “In typical honey, it is hydrogen peroxide that provides this benefit, whereas in manuka honey, it’s UMF that is antibiotic.” UMF stands for Unique Manuka Factor, a grading system that uses a scale of 5 to 20 to gauge each batch of honey's antibacterial strength.

RELATED: This Is What Happens to Your Body When You Eat Sugar

The UMF is determined by levels of three compounds found naturally in manuka honey. (The UMF Honey Association oversees the grading.) Leptisperin is a nectar from the manuka bush, DHA is a type of omega-3 fatty acid, and methylglyoxal is an antibacterial component.

The higher the UMF number, the stronger manuka honey’s antibacterial properties—meaning it can be used to treat wounds, cuts, burns, and even bed sores, says Largeman-Roth. Types of manuka honey that possess a UMF content of 12 or higher are actually considered medical grade, and can be added to bandages to treat wounds, she says.

Manuka honey benefits

Why does manuka honey have such a good reputation for healing wounds and staving off infection? “Honey is very low in moisture content,” says Largeman-Roth. “When you put it on a wound, all the liquid in the wound gets drawn into the honey because it has the ability to absorb the moisture. By sucking up all the impurities, the honey protects the body against infection.” Medical grade manuka can also restore the natural pH of the skin and remove dead tissue when used topically, she adds.

RELATED: 3 Sneaky Things That Are Making You Crave Sugar

Robert Graham, MD, a physician specializing in integrative medicine and the founder of Fresh Med NYC, also says that manuka honey can be used in medical settings. "There is evidence for the use of manuka honey for acute burns, diabetic ulcers, and arterial ulcers," he tells Health. "Particularly for wounds, honey prevents infections, speeds up healing, and has also been shown to decrease the risk of developing community-acquired MRSA." (MRSA is a potentially dangerous staph infection). 

Though most studies that support the use of manuka honey have been done in animals rather than humans, the research has demonstrated its safety and efficacy when compared to a placebo. "The greatest risk is simply verifying the source of [manuka honey]," adds Dr. Graham. "Quality and purity really matter when we're talking about food-based therapies."

Anyone who is allergic to bees should use manuka honey with caution. "Otherwise, it's a win-win with little side effects," says Dr. Graham.  

RELATED: 4 Things You Didn’t Know About Honey

Where to buy manuka honey

To get familiar with brands that sell certified manuka honey, head to the UMF Honey Association’s website. If you’re in the market for manuka, it’s not tough to find it in stores or online. Everything from UMF5+ manuka honey ($28; amazon.com) to manuka lozenges ($8; amazon.com) and manuka adhesive pads ($27; amazon.com) are all available online. Sweet!

How to eat manuka honey

Manuka honey and regular honey have about the same sugar content, though some reports suggest manuka honey could have a slightly lower glycemic index. Yet overall, manuka can be consumed just like regular honey: added to sweeten tea, spread on toast, drizzled on top of desserts, and more. 

One difference, however, is in its texture. Unlike standard honey found on supermarket shelves, manuka honey isn’t a liquid at room temperature. “Rather, it’s a spreadable, thick consistency made of very fine stable crystals,” says Largeman-Roth. 

This Viral Hashtag Captures Exactly What It’s Like to Be a Mom on Valentine’s Day

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This Viral Hashtag Captures Exactly What It’s Like to Be a Mom on Valentine’s Day

Every Valentine’s Day, those little pink boxes of candy hearts hit store shelves. We're fans of the old-school, lovey-dovey phrases stamped on them—but we're also loving the updated, so true messages they would carry if some real moms had their way.

Their candy-heart message suggestions are collected at #IfMomWroteCandyHearts. With over 5,000 tweets and a handful of Instagrams, the hilarious hashtag has gone viral. Below are our favorites, which capture the sweet yet snarky things moms are really thinking.

Dad should be more (or less) involved

 

Why am I the only one breaking out the Swiffer?

 

Don't forget to keep yourself clean too

 

 

Your eating habits need serious brushing up

 

 

 

It's called tough love

 

Hone those communication skills

 

I love you . . . in my own snarky way 

 

 

Here’s a few more we love for good measure: “Drugstore chocolate doesn’t count,” “HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA HA NO,” “Mom isn’t home,” “Clean Dishes Happy Wife,” “Because I said so,” “Not the maid,” and “Baby’s Crying Your Turn” These gems featured in one Instagram post.

 

Common Chemicals in Nonstick Pans and Food Wrappers Could Hurt Your Health–and Your Waistline. Here's How to Avoid Them

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Common Chemicals in Nonstick Pans and Food Wrappers Could Hurt Your Health–and Your Waistline. Here's How to Avoid Them

A common class of chemicals that’s been linked to cancer, fertility problems, and thyroid dysfunction has now been tied to another major health issue: According to a new study in PLOS Medicine, women who have high levels of perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in their blood tend to gain back more unwanted weight after dieting.

The new study included both men and women who’d been enrolled in a two-year clinical trial and who lost weight by following a heart-healthy diet. But when researchers factored in the levels of PFAS in participants’ blood at the start of the study, they found that people with high levels tended to gain more of that weight back after initially losing it.

The association was found almost exclusively in women, and the researchers say that PFAS’ effects on estrogen in the body may be one reason why. But the study also found that people with high PFAS concentrations had lower resting metabolic rates; in other words, their metabolism was slower and they burned fewer calories doing daily activities.

RELATED: Best Superfoods for Weight Loss

The researchers concluded that PFAS may play a role in body weight regulation, and therefore in the country’s current obesity epidemic. “We all know it’s feasible to lose weight through diet or physical activity; however the challenging part is that almost no one can maintain that weight loss,” says senior study Qi Sun, assistant professor in the department of nutrition at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. “Now we’ve shown that PFAS level may actually determine how much weight people regain.”

But what exactly are these chemicals, and why are they in our bodies to begin with? Here’s what you need to know, and how you can reduce your exposure.

Ditch fast food and microwave popcorn

PFAS chemicals have water- and oil-repellant properties, which makes them valuable to the fast-food industry and for packaged foods like microwave popcorn. In a 2017 study published in Environmental Science & Technology Letters, researchers found that about half of the 400 food wrappers and containers they analyzed contained fluorine, an indicator of PFAS.

Previous studies have found that PFAS have the potential to leach into food—and that once PFAS enter the body, they stay there for years. That’s reason enough to avoid exposure whenever possible, says Laurel Schaider, PhD, an environmental chemist at the Silent Spring Institute and lead author of the food-wrapper study.

“I think we all already have some reasons to reduce how much fast food we consume, and this may be another one,” Schaider told Health in 2017. “If you’re going to eat it, you could try to get the food out of the wrapper as quickly as possible—that might help a little bit.”

RELATED: Another Reason to Never Eat Fast Food Again (That Has Nothing to Do With Fat)

Think twice about stain- or water-resistant products

Another common use for PFAS is making clothing, carpets, upholstery, and other textiles stain- or water-resistant. (Think of advertisements where spilled wine on a sofa beads up and wipes right off.) And while some older PFAS have been phased out of textile production because of associated health and environmental risks, some newer ones have taken their place, says Tom Brutton, PhD, a fellow and PFAS researcher at the Green Science Policy Institute—and their health effects are not yet known.

To be safe, Brutton recommends avoiding stain-, water-, soil-, or grease-repellant products whenever they’re not necessary. And when they are—in the case of a raincoat, for example—look for gear labeled PFAS-free or fluoro-free. “You’re starting to be able to find rain jackets and outdoor gear without these chemicals,” he says, “and I think there will be many more options in as little as two or three years.”

If you already own fabrics with PFAS, don’t panic. “The harm that’s going to happen to one person from the exposure of wearing a raincoat or sitting on a stain-resistant carpet is probably quite minimal,” says Brutton. “What we’re really concerned about are the chemicals released when these products are manufactured and also when they’re disposed of and end up in a landfill." If consumers can make smarter choices so there are fewer of these products in circulation, he says, it will be better for our health, and for the environment as a whole.

RELATED: 13 Worst Jobs For Your Lungs

Don’t buy another nonstick pan

The same advice goes for nonstick cookware: If you already own pots and pans with these chemicals, you don’t have to stop using them or throw them away—at least not until they’re scratched or damaged. But don’t buy a new set either. “The exposure to you from your use of that pan isn’t going to be so huge that it represents a significant health threat,” says Brutton. “But when it’s time to buy a new one, perhaps look for one that doesn’t contain PFAS.” Many experts recommend stainless steel, ceramic, or cast-iron cookware, or you can look for brands that advertise being PFAS-free.

RELATED: 6 Reasons You Need a Cast-Iron Skillet in Your Kitchen

Be smart about seafood

Because they’re so prevalent in the environment, PFAS can also accumulate in the tissue of animals that humans then consume for food. The chemicals have been found in contaminated seafood, for example, and Brutton says that buying organic won’t necessarily reduce your exposure.

What will help, however, is choosing fish that are lower on the food chain. You may already be doing that if you’re concerned about mercury and other heavy metals in seafood, says Brutton. Following those same rules will also help you avoid PFAS. “Instead of buying swordfish, for example, choose salmon,” he says.

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Check on your water supply

PFAS released during industrial and manufacturing processes can also accumulate in water supplies, especially near industrial sites, wastewater treatment plants, and military fire-training areas. A 2016 study found that drinking water supplies for at least 6 million Americans may exceed the Environmental Protection Agency’s health advisory limit for lifetime exposure to certain PFAS from drinking water.

Unfortunately, there may not be an easy way to know if your community’s drinking water is contaminated with PFAS, since the EPA does not currently require municipalities to notify residents about these chemicals. But if you’re concerned, it’s worth asking your local supplier.

“In a lot of cases when water utilities find that their levels are high, they’ve taken action and installed filters and alerted consumers, although there’s no guarantee,” Brutton says. Consumers who are concerned about contaminant levels can also install activated carbon filters in their homes. “These products do a fairly good job at removing a lot of these chemicals from drinking water,” he adds.

Mirai Nagasu Set the Record Straight About the Alleged "USA Tattoo" on Her Thigh

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Mirai Nagasu Set the Record Straight About the Alleged "USA Tattoo" on Her Thigh

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You would think that when Mirai Nagasu became the first American female figure skater to land the triple axel at the 2018 Olympic Games, that’s ALL anyone would talk about. Turns out that you can accomplish a feat of strength at the Olympics and people will still be like, “That’s great, but is that a gigantic tattoo on your thigh?”

During her routine, it appeared as if Mirai had “USA” tattooed down her thigh. While that would have been baller if it was the case, what you saw was just therapeutic tape. In fact, you can even buy your own Team USA KT Tape like Nagasu’s online, which is meant to relieve pain and provide support to sore muscles, joints, and tendons.

After Twitter worked itself into a frenzy over speculation that Nagasu had a giant thigh tat, Nagasu set the record straight by retweeting someone who explained that she’s just wearing tape.

“No, Mirai Nagasu does not have a huge tattoo on her inner thigh,” someone wrote on Twitter. “It’s therapeutic tape. Unless…She has a huge tattoo of therapeutic tape on her inner thigh???!!!”

Nagasu had a sense of humor about the whole thing and added: “Omg mindblown that I’ve been figured out.”

She also responded “just some tape” to another report about her “tattoo.”

So, sorry all-of-Twitter, but this…

…is not the badass tattoo you thought it was.

On the bright side, this entire debacle led us to Nagasu’s Twitter account, where we learned that she is clearly a woman after our own hearts.

She’s a Pitch Perfect fan who also wants to meet Leslie Jones? Same.

Gigi Hadid Says She "Loves" Her New Body Following Hashimoto Diagnosis

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Gigi Hadid Says She "Loves" Her New Body Following Hashimoto Diagnosis

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Gigi Hadid is learning to love her new body following an ongoing health battle with Hashimoto’s disease.

The Sports Illustrated swimsuit beauty—who defended her noticeably slimmed-down figure with a flurry of emotional tweets on Sunday—is refusing to let body shamers get her down. On Monday, during an interview with E! News at the Anna Sui fall 2018 runway show, Hadid explained that she has been happy with her body at every stage of treatment, saying: “I’ve loved my body when I was just diagnosed and I loved [it] going through it and I love my body now.”

The 22-year-old also revealed to the publication that she’s embracing her “healthy,” lither frame that has resulted from her body combating the autoimmune disorder. “It’s just about everyone accepting their body as it matures and knowing that it’s not always going to look the same and you can love yourself in all different sizes,” the supermodel said.

The fashion star, who first revealed her diagnosis with the thyroid disease in 2016, continues to be a vocal advocate for loving the skin she’s in, informing critics earlier this week that she “will not further explain the way [her] body looks.”

RELATED: Gigi Hadid Responds to Body-Shaming Critics Calling Her "Too Skinny" at NYFW

However, she did offer a few details as to why her frame has recently appeared thinner than usual. “Although stress & excessive travel can also affect the body, I have always eaten the same, my body just handles it differently now that my health is better," she wrote. "I may be 'too skinny' for u, honestly this skinny isn’t what I want to be, but I feel healthier internally and am still learning and growing with my body everyday, as everyone is."

She added, “I will not further explain the way my body looks, just as anyone, with a body type that doesn't suit ur 'beauty' expectation, shouldn't have to.”

Her tweets garnered the attention of celebrity friends Chrissy Teigen and Ruby Rose, with Teigen offering: "Alternate tweet: 'f— off.'"

And Rose sent some positive vibes, stating: "Can’t wait to see you in Milan. Sorry you too have to explain something so ridiculous to people. Love to you. Love to the people who try to tear down others also because they are just people who haven’t had the spiritual growth that needs to occur to love and accept one another."

Hadid has also received support from her musician beau, Zayn Malik, according to an E! News source, who said the former boy bander "always makes her feel beautiful."