Why Oprah Insists on Hugging Children From the Side, and Four Other Surprising Facts You Didn’t Know About the Media Mogul

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Media icon Oprah Winfrey stopped in Atlanta this past weekend on the fourth leg of her sold-out wellness tour, “Oprah 2020 Vision: Your Life In Focus.

The all-day event featured motivational lectures and tidbits from Lady O herself, along with appearances by renowned dancer and choreographer Julianne Hough and actor Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. The Harpo Studios founder offered tips on making 2020 the best year yet, and even shared a few comical anecdotes about her own journey to physical and emotional wellness.

Oprah Winfrey
Oprah Winfrey motivates audiences to become the best version of themselves at her “2020 Vision: Your Life In Focus” tour. (Photo: Paras Griffin/Getty Images)

Here are a few new things we learned about the media mogul:


She’s not as “nice” as she thinks she is
Winfrey, who celebrated her 66th birthday on Jan. 29, said she learned a hard lesson from longtime boyfriend Steadman Graham about her “nice” temperament. The admitted people pleaser said she once did “everything everyone else wanted me to do … because [I] wanted them to think that I was nice.”

Steadman, 68, said she was far from it, however: “Don’t worry about that, because you’re not nice,” Winfrey recalled him telling her, chuckling. “And so I asked, ‘who’s nice?’ and he said, ‘Your friend Gayle [King], she’s nice!’”

The former talk show host said “intention” is now the guiding principle she uses to help her “set boundaries for myself.”

She thought she was sick with a brain tumor
Lady O talked about how in tune she is with her body, and so when she began suffering from chronic headaches, she feared something must be terribly wrong. She rushed to her doctors for a CT scan, and to confirm what she thought was a brain tumor. But the doctors found nothing.

Fast-forward to a routine visit to her dentist, where she found herself complaining, yet again, about the headaches. The dentist told her his wife had suffered similar headaches — from teeth grinding. Bingo!

She only gives side hugs, on account of her “big breasteses”
Winfrey recalled giving hugs to her grandmother as a child and being all but smothered by her large bosom.

“Every time she hugged me, I thought I was gonna die,” she said. “And so I was like, ‘I hope I don’t get big breasteses like my grandmother,’ but I have them.” The 65-year-old said she’s since grown to love her thick thighs and big boobs, but insists on “hugging young children from the side … so that I don’t frighten the children.”

She Still Saves Her Toast
These days, Winfrey boasts a net worth of over $2.5 billion. But she came from humble beginnings and is still in the mindset of not being wasteful, especially when it comes to food.

The OWN Network chief revealed that she saves slices of toast, just like she did as a kid. Though she knows “there’ll be plenty more toast,” she chooses to save anyway.

She Learned How Fat She was on Live TV
Winfrey said her most “shameful” moment came in 1985 during a “Tonight Show” interview with the late Joan Rivers. A baby-faced Oprah was there to talk about the success of her new talk show, but was instead fat-shamed on live television.

“So how did you gain the weight?” Rivers asked, adding, “You’re very pretty, you shouldn’t let that happen to you.”

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