Talking about her struggle with her health, Winfrey said that after suffering from hyperthyroidism, which speeds up metabolism, she had to deal with hypothyroidism that made her sleep all the time.
"My body was turning on me. First hyperthyroidism, which sped up my metabolism and left me unable to sleep for days. Then hypothyroidism, which slowed down my metabolism and made me want to sleep all the time," E! Online quoted the talk-show maven, as writing in the October issue of O.
"I craved balance. I was desperate to be somewhere in the middle of hyper and hypo—where, obviously, I'd been my whole life, taking it for granted because I didn't know any better. We often need a malfunction to appreciate all the things that function."
Recounting her experience during the recent episode of 'The Oprah Winfrey Show,' which was dedicated to women's health, she said that she was tired during her trip to Africa trying to find out what w as wrong with her.
"I ended up going to Africa and spent a month with my beautiful daughters [at the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa], was still feeling really tired, really tired, going around from doctor to doctor trying to figure out what was wrong and finally figured out that I had literally sort of blew out my thyroid," she said.
After her trip to Johannesburg in June, Winfrey decided to go on a month-long Hawaiian vacation to rejuvenate. "Yes, the whole month—dedicated to myself, for myself. To regroup. Rejuvenate. Restore my soul," she said.
Recalling that she had to turn down several invitations that would have made her travel for business. "I may have lost a few friends, but I know for sure I saved myself. And learned that making the decision to look after yourself is the ultimate in health care," she said.
The host also said that she was determined to educate women not only about thyroid issues, but also about taking care of themselves. "I wanted so many other women who are going through the same thing to check on yourself and recognize that, first of all, it's an issue that we all share in common, especially if you're of a certain age, It was hugely, hugely, hugely important for me to get that in balance,' she said.
"So many of us wait—we don't take the wake-up call, So, use the example of all the other women who have broken down, me included, and use that. What will it take to bring yourself into balance? What will it take for you to care enough about yourself? Don't wait until you have caused harm to yourself before you realize that balance was what you needed to give to yourself," she added.