Netflix’s ‘The Crown’ Reveals Season Four Will Address Princess Diana’s Bulimia Struggle

She once called it her "secret disease"

With the season four premiere of Netflix’s The Crown quickly approaching, fans of the show are eagerly awaiting the introduction of Princess Diana into the royal drama’s narrative. 

And it’s been confirmed that the series will be covering her early courting of and marriage to Prince Charles, as well as the late Princess’ struggle with royal lifeincluding her admitted battle with bulimia

Sources have also confirmed that the three episodes containing references to her eating disorder will contain a trigger warning reading:

“The following episode includes scenes of an eating disorder which some viewers may find troubling. Viewers’ discretion is required.” 

A spokesperson from Netflix spoke to Hello! about the warning, adding: The Crown producers worked closely with the eating disorder charity BEAT to ensure that their portrayal of Princess Diana’s bulimia was both accurate to the disorder and sensitively handled. When viewers watch the series on Netflix they will see warning cards at the beginning of the episodes and details of how to seek help if required.” 

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The Princess of Wales, who passed away in 1997, had been vocal about the difficult part of her life, describing it as her “secret disease”. While speaking candidly to journalist Martin Bashir, she opened up about how it was a response to the pressures of royal life.

“You inflict it upon yourself because your self-esteem is at a low ebb, and you don’t think you’re worthy or valuable. You fill your stomach up four or five times a day—some do it more—and it gives you a feeling of comfort,” she said, explaining how it was a coping mechanism. “It’s like having a pair of arms around you, but it’s temporarily, temporary. Then you’re disgusted at the bloatedness of your stomach, and then you bring it all up again. And it’s a repetitive pattern which is very destructive to yourself.”

“I’d come home and it would be very difficult to know how to comfort myself having been comforting lots of other people, so it would be a regular pattern to jump into the fridge.” 

During the iconic interview, she described it as a “symptom of what was going on in my marriage.”

“I was crying out for help, but giving the wrong signals, and people were using my bulimia as a coat on a hanger: they decided that was the problem—’Diana was unstable’.”

princess diana

Diana will be played by British actress Emma Corrin for the fourth season, who shared her feelings about filming the scenes to Variety.

“You can’t do justice to everything she was experiencing without including that. It was so symptomatic of the emotional turmoil and all the suppressed emotions that she was feeling,” she said.  

Bulimia, otherwise known as bulimia nervosa, is a serious mental illness that involves a person becoming “caught in a cycle of eating large quantities of food (called bingeing), and then trying to compensate for that overeating by vomiting, taking laxatives or diuretics, fasting, or exercising excessively (called purging),” explains BEAT.

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