“Hell’s Kitchen” chef Gordon Ramsay knows his way around a kitchen, but while it helped him gain success, he says his love for food nearly cost him his wife.
In an interview with the Daily Mail, the 51-year-old celebrity chef opened up about his struggle with becoming overweight, which he reportedly felt was putting a strain on his 21 year marriage with wife, Tana, 41.
“I was overweight, 18 stone [252 pounds]. I looked like a sack of s**t. I look at the pictures and think, ‘How did Tana stay around?’ Because Tana has got better-looking and more gorgeous. And there she is, getting in bed with a fat f**k.”
According to Ramsay, his busy schedule — in addition to hosting several cooking shows including “Hell’s Kitchen” and “MasterChef,” he owns several restaurants worldwide — and penchant for snacking rather than sitting down for proper meals caused him to balloon over the years. But that all changed after his fit spouse warned him about his health. Ramsay’s own father passed away at 53, and he was worried he was risking having time to spend with his family.
No stranger to taking off his clothes for the camera, Ramsay found himself starting to become insecure.
“I started focusing on getting super-fit five or six years ago when my life got super-busy. You get consumed by the work,” he shared. “You get sucked up. You get drawn in. All of a sudden your ‘me time’ is zero. There was no breathing space, no down time, no time to even think straight. It all started hitting me hard. I didn’t panic, but my head was not in the game.”
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His close friendship with fellow Brits David and Victoria Beckham didn’t help his self-image either. Ramsay revealed feeling uncomfortable around the studly athlete and his model wife.
“I didn’t have a figure. I didn’t feel that good,” he told the Mail. “After working my a**e off and achieving a lot, I wanted to get in serious shape.”
He added, “It was painful. I used to look at myself in the mirror and think, ‘Holy s**t!’ So it was a big wake-up call.”
Thanks to a fitness coach and a grueling workout regimen, the father of four dropped over 50 pounds and regularly participates in fitness competitions along with Tana and their children: Matilda, 16, Megan, 20, and twins Jack and Holly, 18.
“I don’t want my industry to kill me,” he continued “I know how unhealthy chefs are at the top level. Stress. Suicide. There’s a big downside to cooking loads for a living. It’s lethal: from obesity to heart attacks to cocaine habits.”