Lupita Nyong'o's body "was ravaging itself" when she first found fame.

The 39-year-old star won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar for her breakout role in 2013's '12 Years A Slave' but she admitted she was constantly "mitigating [her] panic" and her inner turmoil "cost" her "physically" in many ways.

She told The Hollywood Reporter: “I was mitigating my panic at all times because extreme failure and extreme success, the body doesn’t know the difference.

“Either way, you are in distress. I’m proud of how I weathered that particular storm, but it cost me. It cost me physically. I was extremely thin. My body was ravaging itself, and I got fibroids.”

After winning the Oscar, Lupita was advised to capitalise on her success but credits Dame Emma Thompson with having "saved her life" by telling her to continue to stick to her own instincts.

She recalled: “I got told a lot, not just by my team but by other actors that I would meet, ‘You’ve got to strike now. ’ ”

Explaining how she'd met Emma on the awards circuit and called her when she was in London to film 'Star Wars: The Force Awakens', she continued: “She invited me over, and I went to dinner with her, and she totally demystified all of that.

“She did save my life. I had won this huge award, and my imposter syndrome was at an all-time high. I was so intimidated by this new platform that I seemed to have. I mean, I acted in one film. I didn’t even know what the ‘martini shot’ was, for crying out loud.

“She told me that she quit acting for over eight years at some point, and everybody told her that she would never be able to come back to it, and she did.

"She encouraged me to do what I thought was best for my instrument.”

As a result of the conversation, the 'Black Panther' actress signed up for a role in Broadway show 'Eclipsed' and she admitted it was just what she needed after the mayhem of awards season.

She explained: “My first place where I cut my teeth was in the theatre, and I wanted to touch base with that because I knew how to do that, and it really, really helped me.

“It helped me rededicate myself to the work of acting because I was so disillusioned by it. The awards circuit is so far away from the work. "Becoming a celebrity, that’s a whole other job than being an actor. I needed to get back to what got me here in the first place, and the theatre did that for me.”