NATALIE Cassidy has opened up about being fat-shamed on Strictly Come Dancing.
The EastEnders actress said she felt ridiculed when she was asked to perform a move on the BBC show that was usually reserved for men.
Talking about an incident on Strictly when she took part back in 2009, she said: “I was about 4st bigger than I am now.
“Vincenzo (Simone) was quite little. And I remember one week, it was like, ‘Oh we’re going to do this dance, but you’re going to pick up Vincent’.
“And I think about it now and I think, ‘Oh, that was out of order. It was a bit out of order to me.’ You couldn’t do that now.”
The experience didn’t stop Natalie enjoying herself away from playing Sonia on EastEnders.
She added on the Ry-union podcast: “Strictly was the best job outside of EastEnders.
“I mean, job? That’s a laugh! Getting up, dancing all day, learning how to dance.
“I had lovely Vincenzo next to me. We were like brother and sister. All week we just laughed the whole time. We just had the best time and I loved it. I loved the glitz, the glamour.”
Natalie, 37, who has played legendary Walford resident Sonia, a nurse, since 1993.
In recent years and after having had two kids, she lost an impressive amount of weight.
Natalie credits training for the London Marathon in 2019 for helping her to shed the pounds.
The brunette beauty took on a gruelling training regime to prepare for the race, which she ran in honour of her former co-star Dame Barbara Windsor, who is battling dementia.
Telly favourite Natalie also decided to ditch alcohol as much as she could in a bid to lose weight.
She told HOAR: “I cut out rubbish. I cut down on alcohol too, even though I love white wine.”
She said she has formed a much healthier relationship with her body – which has helped her stay in shape.
Prior to this, back in 2007, Natalie admitted she had struggled mentally with losing weight for her fitness DVD called Then and Now.
She told Heat magazine: “I really wasn’t well. I was bordering on having an eating disorder.
“There were nights I would go out for dinner and then I’d go home and take laxatives because I didn’t want the food inside me.
“I looked too thin. I can say I wasn’t happy then.”