Christina Applegate Says She Gained 40 Lbs. Due to Medications: 'I Didn't Look Like Myself'
Christina Applegate is admitting that it was difficult to watch her performance in Dead to Me because of her multiple sclerosis.
In a recent interview, the 51-year-old — who confirmed her MS diagnosis in 2021 — told The Los Angeles Times that she waited months to watch the Netflix comedy after season three was released.
"I don't like seeing myself struggling," she explained. "Also, I gained 40 lbs. because of inactivity and medications, and I didn't look like myself, and I didn't feel like myself."
When the actress finally watched the show, she did so alone and had to stop periodically whenever it became too painful.
"At some point I was able to distance myself from my own ego, and realize what a beautiful piece of television it was," Applegate told the outlet. "All the scenes I wasn't in were so much fun to see and experience for the very first time."
RELATED: Christina Applegate Says Filming 'Dead to Me' Let Her Grieve MS Diagnosis: 'I Could Fall Apart'
RELATED: Christina Applegate Slams Comment Saying Plastic Surgery Changed Her Looks, Not MS: 'I Laughed'
Regardless, Applegate's performance as Jen Harding in Dead to Me earned her a number of nominations, including her sixth-ever SAG nomination for outstanding performance by a female actor in a comedy series.
The actress admitted, however, that the upcoming SAG Awards will most likely be her last as she continues to deal with the impacts from the disease.
"It's my last awards show as an actor probably, so it's kind of a big deal," Applegate shared. "Right now, I couldn't imagine getting up at 5 a.m. and spending 12 to 14 hours on a set; I don't have that in me at this moment."
Applegate was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis in August 2021 while filming the third season of her Netflix dramedy Dead to Me.
Back in December, she appeared virtually on The Kelly Clarkson Show and revealed that she typically uses her job as an actress to distract her from any of her real-life problems.
"I've probably been going through grief and trauma my whole life, and acting was the place that I got to go to not feel it, you know?" she said at the time, noting that she used acting to avoid dealing with past breakups, trauma, deaths and breast cancer.
RELATED: Christina Applegate Reveals She Was Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis
Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories.
She admitted to Clarkson that, for the first time, going to work every day gave her the space to grieve, channeling the emotions behind her MS diagnosis into her character.
"The beauty of Dead to Me is that it gave me almost this weird platform of dealing with it, where I didn't have to be on all the time and I didn't have to make all the jokes and I could fall apart in a scene," Applegate explained. "And it was, like, me. It was my soul actually falling apart, unfortunately, in front of the world, but it was cathartic in a beautiful way."
The Bad Moms star said she also copes with the diagnosis with humor so others can treat her the same as before her MS was public.
"Yeah, my humor shields keep me OK, but, of course, down on the insides, you feel the things," she said on the show. "And I do it to kind of deflect and then also make people not be scared to be around me, you know? When people see me now as a disabled person, I want them to feel comfortable that we can laugh about it."