Tyra Banks was very insecure as a teenager.

The supermodel started her own charity, the TZONE Foundation, to empower young women to discover their own strength and realise their ambitions, as she hated being teased for being too thin when she was younger.

She told People magazine: ''Part of my desire to help these girls is because of my own insecurities at that age. The summer I was 11 years old, I lost 30 lbs in three months. It was the 1980s, during the Ethiopian famine, and I got a lot of comments.

''My school thought I was ill. It was a very painful time.''

The 'America's Next Top Model' presenter was also branded ''fat'' in 2006 after photographs emerged of her looking more curvaceous in a swimsuit on the beach.

She explained: ''Who would have thought that the girl who was once forced to go to hospital because she was too skinny would one day be called too fat?

''I lived both of those.''

Meanwhile, the former's Victoria's Secret model believes the entertainment and fashion industries often perpetuate a negative image that women need to be extremely thin to be considered beautiful.

She said previously: ''The skinnier a lot of actresses are, or singers are, or celebrities are, they tend to get a lot of coverage. A lot of, 'Oh, she's such a fashion darling, look at her, let's take her picture as she goes shopping, let's put her on the cover of our magazine.'

''The fashion industry has a very narrow definition of what beauty is - specifically now, it's a size 0 [or] 00.''