Ellie Goulding is the Cosmopolitan UK January 2014 cover girl. The Brit-Award winning singer offers a candid interview for the magazine in which she sheds light on the issues she had to face while growing up from overcoming body image issues to battling panic attacks and mending her broken heart.

Though the singer admits she’s in a good place now and she feels at her strongest now, it wasn’t always like that. At one point, she was obsessed with her weight. “I went through a time of being quite insecure. I’d convinced myself I was fat; I didn’t like my figure and I had a big nose. Now I’ve finally got to a place where I don’t focus on those things,” she stated, adding that she changed the way she looks at food in the process: “At university I went through a phase of being terrified of eating carbs; instead I’d just eat sweets and chocolate. I realize now that was ridiculous. I lacked energy and fell asleep in my lectures. Now I don’t deprive myself – everything in moderation!”

An even more serious issue she had to overcome was facing serious panic attacks: “One day after a shoot I was on a train going to a funeral and my heart was pounding; I thought I was having a heart attack. When I got to Cardiff, the next train was cancelled, so I had to get in a cab with strangers to Hereford. I was so scared I reached over to this woman and said, ‘I think I’m dying.’” she stated. For these issues, cognitive behavioral therapy turned out to be very helpful.

Ellie Goulding For Cosmopolitan Uk  2014

However, her music was also a useful outlet for expressing her feelings. A notable example is a popular song of hers: “My song I Know You Care is about my dad and kind of my closure. I had a lot of anger and bitterness because he wasn’t around. So much has happened to me in the past four years; he hasn’t been part of that, and he wasn’t before. Part of me wants him to be a nice dude, and be apologetic. But I’m really worried he’s not going to be like that, so I’d rather have the question mark than the truth.”

In the interview, Ellie Goulding also revealed she’s good friends with Rita Ora, Cara Delevingne and Taylor Swift. Like the “I Knew You Were Trouble” singer, she also uses her past relationships as inspiration for her songs: “Me and Taylor [Swift] are similar in that we write about relationships, and we joke about that. We text and sometimes I only have to say one thing, and even if it’s cryptic she gets it.”

To read more about the singer’s road to becoming what she is now and the way she expresses her feelings through music, be sure to pick up the January 2014 issue of Cosmopolitan UK, which hits the newsstands on December 6.

You might also be interested in:Bria Murphy Talks Pressure To Stay Thin

Photos: Cosmopolitan UK