DRAKE & JOSH star Josh Peck opened up about his past drug and alcohol addictions after losing 127 pounds.
The 35-year-old actor – who has been sober for nearly 15 years – detailed his struggles with weight and substance abuse in his new memoir.
In an interview with PEOPLE ahead of the book’s March 15 release date, Josh admits, “I’ve always looked for something outside to fix inside.
“But eventually I realized whether my life was beyond my wildest dreams or a total mess, it didn’t change the temperature of what was going on in my head. I knew that nothing in the outside world would make me feel whole.”
The former child star has been sober since 2008 but reveals his addictive behaviors started with his unhealthy diet growing up.
He began his acting career opposite Amanda Bynes on Nickelodeon’s The Amanda Show and managed to break into the comedy Drake & Josh opposite Drake Bell.
“I’ve spent most of my life dying to be typical, but I grew up with a single mom, I was overweight, and I was a musical theater kid with really no social status.
“Comedy was my natural defense mechanism,” he explained.
Weighing almost 300 pounds, Josh decided to focus on his health at 18 months of diet and exercise, which resulted in a weight loss of over 100 pounds.
However, he realized that his weight wasn’t his only obstacle as he soon turned to other vices to deal with his emotions.
“It became clear that after losing the weight, I was the same head in a new body. What’s really clear is that I’m overdoing it,” he said.
“And then I discovered drugs and alcohol. And that became my next chapter. I used food and drugs to numb my feelings.”
Josh struggled with his own insecurities and was in the public eye at a young age, saying he gravitated more towards drugs and alcohol to fit in.
“I had this illusion that if I participated, I would become more confident and attractive. I tried to calm that voice that would wake me up every morning and tell me I wasn’t enough,” he confessed.
The reputation his partying created in Hollywood was a scare for the How I Met Your Father star as he reflected on those troubling times, describing his behavior as “unstable and erratic”.
“I had worked so hard for this thing and I was about to lose it,” he said.
“HEALTH, PEACE & HAPPINESS”
After joining a treatment center, he was able to kick his unhealthy habits, which later led to a series of professional successes.
Josh added a slew of film and TV show credits to his already impressive resume in his 20s, including a role in the 2012 action film Red Dawn and 2016’s Marvel hit Captain America.
He recently had a starring role in the Disney reboot of Turner & Hooch, and he’s part of the cast of How I Met Your Father, which premiered on Hulu earlier this year.
“By going through discomfort and doing my best to shed the false identity I had for myself, I was able to get to the place I’ve always been looking for,” Josh told the publication.
“I’m just trying to do a good job that makes people happy.”
Josh also married film director Paige O’Brien and fathered their three-year-old son Max.
“It took me a really long time to love the 15-year-old version of me,” he confessed.
“But now I understand how strong he was. And I feel like everything in my life has prepared me to find that chapter of health, peace and contentment.”
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https://www.thesun.co.uk/tvandshowbiz/celebrities/17912614/josh-peck-secret-drug-alcohol-addiction-dropping-pounds/ Drake & Josh star Josh Peck reveals he secretly suffered from drug and alcohol addiction after losing 127 pounds