Billie Jean King: Star's 'wake up call' diagnosis after developing eating disorder aged 51
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The former world No.1 tennis player has spoken openly about her eating disorder in the past as well as her type 2 diabetes diagnosis, which runs in her family. Now 78 years old, King is known for not only her tennis career but her advocacy of gender equality and social justice. Combining her two passions, King won the "Battle of the Sexes" tennis match against the 55-year-old Bobby Riggs back in 1973 which motivated her to create the Women’s Tennis Association. Long after her professional tennis career had ended, King was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes , a diagnosis that surprisingly did not shock her.
Having had a family history of the condition, King also suffered from a binge eating disorder a decade before her diagnosis, both factors which could have contributed to her development of the disease.
“It’s a wake-up call but I also knew from some of the people around me that you can live a great life,” King said not too long after her diagnosis back in 2017.
“You don’t have to let it defeat you. You can defeat it.”
The star then went on to discuss her eating disorder, which she also wrote extensively about in her 2021 autobiography All In.
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