Sexy actress Jessica Alba is amazed she's been able to make a name for herself in action movies - because she had so many ailments as a young child.

Alba has appeared in such action-filled films as Sin City and FANTASTIC FOUR, as well as her former TV show Dark Angel, but the screen beauty admits that just over a decade ago, she was a far cry from the physically fit image she holds today.

She says, "I had really bad asthma and a kidney problem; I had my tonsils out and cysts on my throat.

"I was in the hospital a lot from ages four to 12 - I never fit in. If I ran outside, I had to have breathing machine and be hooked up to oxygen.

"I also took steroids because that's the only thing that opens up your lungs - and you gain like 15 pounds every time you go on them."

27/07/2005 09:12