Gina Florio
August 01, 2016 6:09 pm
Mike Windle/Getty Images for NYLON

The ridiculously talented singer JoJo hasn’t released a record in years — but not because she hasn’t wanted to. She was instead tangled up with her former record label, Blackground Records. There were problems with ownership and distribution, and her ability to put new music out into the world was unfortunately stunted as a result.

This record label also put her through hell by pressuring JoJo to go through with an outrageous diet in an effort to lose weight.

Shaking your head? Yeah, us too.

It’s not just that they were telling her to lose weight (which in and of itself is not cool). It’s how outrageous the diet was that really took a toll on her. In an interview with PopSugar, JoJo said going along with this so-called diet ended up “really messing with [her] psychologically.

“They got me with a nutritionist and had me … on all these supplements, and I was injecting myself.”

Apparently, this isn’t unheard of in the music industry, according to Jojo: “This is a common thing ‘the girls’ do, by the way – it makes your body only need certain calories, so I ate 500 calories a day. It was the most unhealthy thing I’ve ever done.” Like any unhealthy diet, it caused her to gain all the weight back afterwards, which made her feel incredibly self-conscious and disappointed.

“I was upset that I even subscribed to the standard that they wanted me to be at … I felt like, if I don’t do this my album won’t come out … and it didn’t.”

She was only 18 or 19 at the time and she called herself “very impressionable.” These days, though, JoJo is all about listening to herself and only following her own orders. That’s why the singer concluded with our new favorite mantra:

“Sometimes we need a reminder that at the end of the day it’s how you feel about you that matters.”

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