'Modern Family' star Ariel Winter says she was fat-shamed by viewers at 13

LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA - NOVEMBER 06: Actress Ariel Winter attends the Wags & Walks 10th Annual Gala at the Taglyan Complex on November 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)
Ariel Winter played Alex on the hit show. (Amanda Edwards/Getty Images)

Modern Family star Ariel Winter has said she was fat-shamed by viewers when she was as young as 13.

The US star played Alex Dunphy on the hit sitcom from the ages of 11 to 22.

ET has reported that she opens up about being trolled for her looks in an upcoming episode of Red Table Talk: The Estefans.

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"I got called a fat slut when I was 13," she says. "That was rough. Because I gained weight and my body changed, I had to wear different outfits and I wore a dress that had a cutout here (neck and chest area).

"And the headlines were dark. Fat slut was rough for me, and it continued."

'Modern Family'. (Credit: ABC)
The actress with the Modern Family cast. (ABC)

Winter said while many fans of the comedy were lovely, "some were also hard on me in the way they loved Alex Dunphy and because I wasn't Alex Dunphy and didn't look like Alex, I didn't want to dress like Alex".

The actor, 23, said some fans would ask how she went from being Alex Dunphy to being "a whore" and would call her a "horrible role model".

The star said she gained 30 lb in high school as she was on antidepressants.

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She said things at the time were "rough", both at school and online, where her Instagram was flooded with comments.

WEST HOLLYWOOD, LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA, USA - JANUARY 23: Actress Ariel Winter arrives at the Spotify Best New Artist 2020 Party held at The Lot Studios on January 23, 2020 in West Hollywood, Los Angeles, California, United States. (Photo by Xavier Collin/Image Press Agency/Sipa USA)
The star was on the show for 11 years. (Image Press Agency/Sipa USA)

Winter has previously spoken out about it being tricky to grow up on television in front of millions of people.

Last year the star told People that while she was very grateful to have her career and to have been on the much-loved sitcom, there were drawbacks.

"It’s not very easy, just because people think that just because you’re on TV, they’re entitled to your life," she said.

Watch: Ariel Winter sports a bikini as she channels The Little Mermaid with new red hair