Zayn Malik Says His Disordered Eating Habits Developed Out of a Need for Control

Zayn Malik clarifies the grounds of his unhealthy eating habits that he developed while touring with One Direction in an interview with the Sunday Times.

Malik first opened up about his “quite serious” relationship with food in his self-titled autobiography that was released in November 2016.

“Something I’ve never talked about in public before, but which I have come to terms with since leaving the band, is that I was suffering from an eating disorder,” Malik wrote. “It wasn’t as though I had any concerns about my weight or anything like that. I’d just go for days — sometimes two or three days straight — without eating anything at all.”

He now tells the U.K.’s Sunday Times Style magazine that his condition “wasn’t specifically an eating disorder.”

“It was a control thing. Every area of my life was so regimented and controlled, it was the one area where I could say, ‘No, I’m not eating that,'” Malik clarifies. “Once I got over the control, the eating just came back into place super naturally.”

Malik says that he’s overcome his anxiety as well. “People saw strength in that, and they didn’t seem to expect it from a guy, but they expect it from a female, which to me is crazy,” he said. “We’re all human. People are often afraid to admit difficulties, but I don’t believe that there should be a struggle with anything that’s the truth.”

Stronger now, Malik reveals that Hadid has been living with him in his Bel Air home over the past year and that she’s met his family.

“I call her Gee, she calls me Zee. There’s some other nicknames too, but I’ll keep those private,” he says.

Read the full interview over on The Times online.