Bloc Québécois Leader Daniel Paillé has announced he will step down because of epilepsy-related health issues.

"Leading a political party requires you to be in very good physical shape and to be of tremendous strength and endurance. It’s a full-time job. I am now going to turn it over to someone else," Paillé said at a news conference this afternoon in Montreal.

He said his health issues began to emerge in recent months. 

Paillé said his condition is manageable and can be stabilized, but only if he follows a more stable and predictable lifestyle.

"Knowing when to leave is important, and for me that time has come," Paillé said. 

Paillé was elected head of the sovereigntist party on Dec. 11, 2011, succeeding Gilles Duceppe.

Duceppe announced he would step down following the 2011 federal election. 

The Bloc Québécois has four elected representatives in the House of Commons.

About 20 per cent of Quebec voters support the party.