In a candid new video titled “Finding Peace at the Top of the Music Industry,” superstar Ed Sheeran opened up about his battle with binge eating and alcohol abuse during the “lowest” point in his life back in 2015.
The conversation was filmed for the Hay House Chasing the Present Summit, an event meant to “explores the modern epidemic of anxiety and ways to find freedom and healing,” the event’s website states.
As HuffPost points out, this interview comes as Sheeran continues a music hiatus he began over the holidays, as he outlined in this December 2019 post:
“I have a very addictive personality,” the Grammy-winner said in the new video. “I would stay up and drink all night. The buses would park underneath arenas and I’d sleep on the bus all day and then wake up and then come out, do the show, drink, get back on the bus. I didn’t see sunlight for like maybe like four months.”
This dark period of his life coincided with the promotion and tour for his second album X.
“I’m covered in tattoos and I don’t do things by halves,” he said. “If I’m gonna drink, I kinda see no point in having a glass of wine. I’d rather have two bottles of wine...It’s all fun and games at the start. It’s all rock and roll and it’s fun, and then it starts getting just sad. So I think that was probably the lowest that I’ve been.”
The 29-year-old found solace in the parallels between him and Elton John while reading his 2019 memoir Me, where Elton writes about his struggles with drinking and binge eating, which can indicate an eating disorder.
“He would be like, ‘I would just go on an ice cream binge and eat four fucking desserts until I threw it up,’ and I was like, ‘Oh, I’ve done that before,’” Sheeran shared. “Or his martini binges, where he sees how many martinis he can drink. And I’m like, ‘I’ve done that before, too.’”
Sheeran attributes some of his recovery to his wife Cherry Seaborn. “She exercises a lot, so I went and started going on runs with her,” he said in the interview. “She doesn’t drink that much, so I wasn’t drinking. I think that all changed things.”
Ultimately Sheeran said he's learning to take care of himself through exercise and moderation. "I think with addiction, it's just very hard to moderate, but moderation is the key," he said.
Watch the full interview with Sheeran above.