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Prince William opens up about Princess Diana's bulimia battle

The royal said he was 'proud' of his mother for sharing her story

prince william
Gemma Strong
Online Digital News Director
22 August 2017
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Prince William has spoken about his late mother's battle with bulimia in a new Channel 4 documentary focused on eating disorders. The father-of-two sat down with former ITN newsreader Mark Austin and his daughter Maddy, who was diagnosed with anorexia in December 2012, but has thankfully made a full recovery. Having welcomed Mark and Maddy into his Kensington Palace home, William told the pair that there's a need to "normalise the conversation about mental health", adding: "The fact you are speaking out is incredibly brave, but it should become very normal."

mark austin maddy© Photo: Getty Images

Prince William spoke to Mark Austin and his daughter Maddy in the Channel 4 documentary

Princess Diana first revealed she had suffered from bulimia in Andrew Morton's book Diana: Her True Story in 1992, and spoke about the disorder again in 1995 during her interview with Panorama. In the Channel 4 documentary, Maddy tells William, "I was really inspired by what your mum did", to which he replies: "We need to be matter-of-fact about it, and not hide it in the dark where it festers." Mark, meanwhile, asks the prince if he is proud of his mother for sharing her story with the public.

prince william princess diana© Photo: Getty Images

The Prince said he was proud of his mother for speaking publicly about her battle with bulimia

"Absolutely," William, 35, replies. "These things are illnesses and they need to be treated. Mental health needs to be taken as seriously as physical health." He later added: "I really hope George and Charlotte can grow up in a world where mental health is completely normalised and where we can all talk about it openly and honestly. We can talk about stuff and it is not a weakness and not to be ashamed of."

Wasting Away: The Truth About Anorexia will air on Channel 4 on Thursday 24 August.

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