Actress Portia De Rossi has urged the worried parents and friends of potential anorexia victims to offer up their concerns - before an eating disorder consumes their loved ones.
The former Ally MCBeal stars talks about her battle with anorexia in new memoir Unbearable Lightness and she fears she would be really ill or even dead if her brother hadn't voiced his opinion about the star's drastic weightloss.
De Rossi fears too many people worry that they'll be "shut out" or even disowned if they approach an anorexic about their concerns - but she insists it's the best thing you can do.
In a taped interview for her wife Ellen DeGeneres' TV talk show, the actress explains, "A lot of people don't say anything at all because they are worried that that person is just going to completely shut them out of their lives and that actually may happen.
"But it is really important to say something. And the thing that you should say... the thing that I would have responded to was, 'You look sick. You don't look well. You look like you're suffering' - because the anorexic wants to be admired.
"Dieting is really hard and, to get down to that weight, you want people to admire you... 'You're too thin' to me was more of a compliment. Who can be too thin? There is a joke about it. You can't ever be too thin. So that just felt like a compliment.
"Anything that would suggest that a girl is not as in control as she wants to appear to be is a better thing. Because an anorexic wants control more than anything."
The interview will air in America on Thursday (04Nov10).