Zayn Malik opens up about his upcoming second album, mental health, and One Direction ‘anxiety’

“They always say the second album is difficult, but so far I’m really happy with this one. There are real signs of growth and development. Hopefully, as a human being, I’m growing too, in my knowledge and perception,” said Zayn Malik in a recent interview with the Sunday Times. He released his debut solo album, “Mind of Mine,” in March 2016, and his sophomore effort is expected later this year.

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The 24-year-old British singer was a member of the band One Direction before deciding to strike out on his own in 2015. “I now have no problem with anxiety. It was something I was dealing with in the band,” he said. He also recently revealed his struggle with 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.'” And opening up about that struggle has helped him cope. He explained, “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. We’re all human.”

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Malik recently won the 2016 American Music Award for New Artist of the Year. His latest single, “I Don’t Wanna Live Forever” with Taylor Swift (from the “Fifty Shades Darker” soundtrack), is currently in the top-five of Billboard’s Hot 100 Singles chart. His solo debut single “Pillowtalk” topped the Hot 100 chart in 2016.

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