Jennifer Lopez Shares A Story Of "Feeling Physically Paralyzed" That Led Her To Make Major Changes In Her Lifestyle

By Gina Florio··  3 min read
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It's fairly common to feel indestructible when you're in your 20s. This is a feeling Jennifer Lopez was all too familiar with when she was younger, but it led to a severe panic attack that sparked her to make serious changes in her lifestyle.

Singer and global phenomenon Jennifer Lopez has always been busy with some kind of project, whether it's making a hit movie like Hustlers, practicing for a Super Bowl halftime show, or putting on a huge performance in Las Vegas. But J-Lo, 52, is reflecting back on the time in her career and life when she just had far too much going on, and she wants her story to be a cautionary tale for busy young women everywhere. Just because you feel indestructible doesn't mean you are.

Jennifer Lopez Shares a Story of "Feeling Physically Paralyzed" That Led Her To Make Major Changes in Her Lifestyle

Every week, J-Lo sends out a newsletter with some insight into her life. In her most recent newsletter, she opened up about her philosophy on wellness and a scary experience in her 20s that got her to this point. When she was younger, J-Lo was constantly on the go, so much so that it started to chip away at her health.

"There was a time in my life where I used to sleep 3 to 5 hours a night. I'd be on set all day and in the studio all night and doing junkets and filming videos on the weekends," she wrote. "I was in my late 20s and I thought I was invincible."

Then the unthinkable happened. She was sitting in her trailer and suddenly all the stress and lack of sleep "caught up with me." She had a severe panic attack that left her completely immobile and "feeling physically paralyzed." She said she "went from feeling totally normal to thinking about what I needed to do that day and all of a sudden I felt as if I couldn't move."

"I was completely frozen," J-Lo wrote. She "couldn't see clearly" and she was frightened. "Now I know it was a classic panic attack brought on by exhaustion, but I had never even heard the term at the time," she said.

"My security guard on set came in and picked me up and drove me to the doctor. By the time I got there, I could at least speak again, and I was so terrified I thought I was losing my mind," J-Lo said. The doctor simply said that she needed to change her lifestyle if she wanted to avoid these kinds of panic attacks.

"I asked the doctor if I was going crazy," she continued. "He said, 'No, you're not crazy. You need sleep...Get 7 to 9 hours of sleep per night, don't drink caffeine, and make sure you get your workouts in if you're going to do this much work.'"

At this point in her life, she knew she wasn't properly taking care of herself. She was working on a new album, garnering attention and praise for her role in Selena, and entering her first marriage. She needed to take a second to breathe. Her health depended on it.

"I realized how serious the consequences could be of ignoring what my body and mind needed to be healthy—and that's where my journey to wellness began," she added. This is why J-Lo has changed her wellness philosophy to be "about pro-living versus anti-aging."

She used her newsletter to educate her fans on the importance of high-quality sleep. There's no supplement or magic pill you can take (or any amount of caffeine) that will be the equivalent to a night of healthy sleep. J-Lo jokes that getting good sleep is what makes her look ageless!

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