"I started to develop insomnia and I fell into a pretty bad depression for a long time"
Zac Efronis talking all things physical appearance -- from recent plastic surgery rumors to the unseen cost of getting super lean.
In an interview with Men's Health, the "Baywatch" star got candid about the lasting effects of his fitness training while getting in shape for the 2017 film.
Though Efron is currently bulking for an upcoming project, he revealed how he's approaching his training differently.
"That Baywatch look, I don't know if that's really attainable. There's just too little water in the skin. Like, it's fake; it looks CGI'd," he explained. "And that required Lasix, powerful diuretics, to achieve. So I don't need to do that. I much prefer to have an extra, you know, 2 to 3 percent body fat."
In addition to taking diuretics, pills that help rid your body of salt and water, the 34-year-old was overtraining and eating the same three meals daily. Efron shared he often wouldn't get enough sleep; filming for "Baywatch" would end at midnight, and he would wake up at 4 a.m. the next morning to train.
"I started to develop insomnia and I fell into a pretty bad depression for a long time. Something about that experience burned me out," Zac confessed the training process had been particularly devastating for his physical and mental health. "I had a really hard time recentering. Ultimately they chalked it up to taking way too many diuretics for way too long, and it messed something up."
At a certain point, Efron said it became "a dream of mine" to not have to stay in shape all the time.
"What if I just say, 'F--k it' and let myself go? So I tried it, and I was successful. And for all the reasons I thought it would be incredible, I was just miserable," he continued. "My body would not feel healthy; I just didn't feel alive. I felt bogged down and slow."
Efron also addressed his appearance on Bill Nye's Earth Day Special and the social media hubbub around rumors he had gotten plastic surgery back in April 2021.
The "Neighbors" star revealed that "Jaw-gate" was the result of an accident he had in his home. Efron had been running around in his home wearing socks when he tripped and hit his jaw on a granite corner of a fountain. When he made impact with the corner, Zac lost consciousness and woke up with his chin bone hanging off his face.
According to the "High School Musical" alum, the altered appearance of his face was the result of his masseter muscles growing after they had compensated for most of the chewing and mobility of his jaw after his injury.
Efron told the publication he actually does physical therapy and sees a specialist to mediate the long term after effects of his injury. However, he took a hiatus from the therapy before that Jaw-gate appearance while he lived in Australia during the pandemic.
"The masseters just grew," he said of that time period, "They just got really, really big."
Though plastic surgery speculation around his jaw was blowing up on Twitter, Efron admitted he didn’t know until his mother called to ask if he had gone under the knife.
"If I valued what other people thought of me to the extent that they may think I do," he concluded, "I definitely wouldn’t be able to do this work."