Martine McCutcheon: "People talked about my body like I was a piece of meat"


Former EastEnders star Martine McCutcheon has opened up about the body shaming she endured as a young actress, saying: "People talked about my body like I was a piece of meat."

Martine, who also starred opposite Hugh Grant in Love Actually, said it took a long time to deal with the criticism she received.

Martine McCutcheon arrives at the British Heart Foundation 'Tunnel of Love' party
(Dominic Lipinski/PA)

She told The Mirror: "I was always conscious of staying as thin as I could be. It looked better on camera, meant I could fit into size 8 sample sizes, and it was easier and more affordable with stylists. It was so nice to be sent a dress that actually fit."

She added: "Growing up in the public eye, you are judged by everybody and you work hard to try to keep everyone happy. Now I don't care what people think."

Breast Cancer Campaign Patron Martine McCutcheon arrives at the Breast Cancer Campaign Pink Ribbon Ball
(Katie Collins/PA)

She said the "hundreds" of derogatory comments made about her body stayed with her, adding: "People spoke about me like I was a piece of meat and I can't believe that's still going on in this day and age.

"I'm sure people still say horrible things now, but it's water off a duck's back because I have an anchor within myself. But it's so dangerous when you are younger."

Martine, 39, said she no longer feels like she has to fit a certain mould, adding: "I am who I want to be, and most importantly the weight I want to be when I want to be it. If I choose to be a size 10 or a size 16, it's my choice. Women's weight fluctuates, and the constant comments on size are boring.

Library filer from July 1997 of Eastenders Grant (Ross Kemp) and Tiffany Mitchell (Martine McCutcheon)
(Stefan Rousseau/PA)

"We're bright women, intelligent and more savvy than ever, and I think more than ever we should have each other's back and move on."

The actress has released a plus-size clothing line for Fashion World and said she became more accepting of her body after she became a mother to her son Rafferty, one.

She added: "Getting pregnant and having Rafferty made me realise my priority now is to be healthy and stay that way rather than try to stick to something I could never maintain. I am so bored of the weight loss roller-coaster."