Ricky Gervais decided to lose weight because he feared his excess fat could kill him.

The British funnyman recently embarked on a health kick and admits he made the choice to shift the flab because he was worried he would have a heart attack and not be able to enjoy his success.

Ricky - who has appeared in several Hollywood films - explained: "I don't want to blow it. I don't want to go, 'Oh f**k! You idiot. So now, everything's great. And you're going to die at the age of 51 of a heart attack, you fat idiot.' "

The 49-year-old comic - who shot to fame in the British sitcom 'The Office', which he co-wrote and starred in as lead character David Brent - also revealed he can be a control freak because he enjoys being involved in every aspect of his work.

He explained to the Observer Magazine: "I joke about it, but it is also true. I am a bit of a control freak. But I think in a good way. I think when you're doing anything creative, it isn't a democracy really. There's no room for democracy.

"It's not that I think that everything I do is definitively right, it's that everything I do is the way I want it to be. That's all.

"I like the process not the sitting back and watching it. I haven't even watched 'The Office' since it went out on TV. It's the creative process I enjoy. Nothing gives me an adrenalin rush like the idea. Nothing at all."