Pop star Lizzo has said her anxiety “sometimes fuels” who she is as a performer and artist.

The American singer and rapper, known for hits Truth Hurts and Juice, is famed for her exuberant, energetic live performances.

She told British Vogue: “When I get really, really anxious before a show, I just go harder and harder and harder when I’m performing and I just go crazy.

Lizzo performs on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards 2019
Lizzo performs on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards 2019 (PA Wire/PA)

“I don’t know why, but my anxiety sometimes fuels who I am as a performer and who I am as an artist – and I know that is not the case for everyone.

“I don’t know if my body just, like, out of a desperate need to find a place for my anxiety or find a use for it, takes it and puts it there.”

The 31-year-old music star added: “I think if I was 21 right now, I would not be able to maintain this lifestyle without having major anxiety and panic attacks.

“But thank God, my journey is all about self-care and finding that love for yourself and nurturing yourself. Because that’s what artists need more than anything.”

Detroit-born Lizzo, whose real name is Melissa Jefferson, has enjoyed a stellar year following the April release of her third studio album, Cuz I Love You, and she performed at Glastonbury Festival this summer.

Lizzo was a hit at Glastonbury this year (Kloss Films/British Vogue)

She is also an actress and appeared in the drama Hustlers alongside Constance Wu and Jennifer Lopez, and she is a prominent body positivity activist on social media.

Talking about the lack of body representation in the media, Lizzo told the magazine: “I would watch things on television and I would look at magazines and I would not see myself.

“When you don’t see yourself, you start to think something’s wrong with you.

“Then you want to look like those things and when you realise it’s a physical impossibility, you start to think, ‘What the f*** is wrong with me?’ I think that took a greater toll on me, psychologically, growing up than what anyone could have said to me.”

British Vogue’s editor-in-chief, Edward Enninful, said: “It brings me great joy to share with you the second of British Vogue’s December covers: the talented and beautiful musician Lizzo.

“This month marks the two-year anniversary since my first issue of British Vogue, so it is very special to me. Seeing such a positive force for good on our cover in all her glory makes me realise how far we have come.

“I’m so pleased that inclusivity remains at the core of British Vogue and that, in the time since I began here, the fashion and publishing industries have started to embrace a much more exciting and diverse idea of who can be a cover star now.

“Seeing someone as amazing as Lizzo on a magazine cover has at last begun to feel normal. How incredible is that?.”

See the full feature in the December issue of British Vogue, available now.