British singer Lily Allen has lavished praise on her husband for forcing her to stop her self-destructive behaviour by giving her an ultimatum.

The Smile star began dating Sam Cooper in 2009, but when he forced her to choose between her alcohol and drug abuse and their relationship, Allen finally realised she needed to seek help and get sober.

She tells Britain's The Sun on Sunday, "Sam saved me for sure. I was self-medicating with alcohol and whatever else and Sam was obviously attracted to me when I was like that. He could see that I was being quite self-destructive and at one point he said, 'What are you doing? I would really like to be with you, but I can't be with you if you are going to be like this all the time.'

"I remember thinking, 'Ok, well you promised to take me on and stick around, then yeah, I'll cut back'.

"It wasn't that dark for me, it was just like either I carry on doing this and leave it until it starts to become a problem or nip it in the bud now and concentrate on a different area of my life."

She adds, "I believe you're avoiding something when you're drinking or taking drugs or whatever. You are basically just avoiding the truth. And so Sam introduced me to myself. The real me."

Allen and Cooper, who wed in 2011, are parents to two daughters, two-year-old Ethel and 15-month-old Marnie.