James Martin health: Life-threatening illness has ‘been an issue’ for chef – symptoms

James Martin straightens lampshade after ITV viewer complains

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The chef who stars in his own cooking show on Saturday mornings is constantly showing others how to make the tastiest recipes. Yet for the chef, keeping healthy has to remain a priority as the risk of heart disease has “been an issue” for his family for generations. Speaking to The Herald James said: “Heart disease has been an issue in my family for generations. My dad likes his food deep-fried with lots of butter, but he doesn’t like running it off.”

Continuing, the chef said: “I don’t do much exercise either.

“When you’re a big bloke like my grandfather, father and me, it’s not as easy to stay fit as it is for someone who’s a bit smaller.”

James’ father who also worked as a chef in Yorkshire suffered three heart attacks following his father and James’ grandfather’s death of heart disease.

Despite his family history with cardiovascular problems the chef’s new book uses butter in every way possible. 

“I was doing a gig abroad and I was chatting to a gentleman same age as me, similar work ethic,” James said.

He went out on stage literally five minutes after I spoke to him to do an award ceremony and he died before he hit the floor.”

This traumatic experience urged James to make a change and soon after he announced a break from TV.

James admitted at the time that he was a serial workaholic, and he needed to “readdress the balance” in his life swapping TV for his restaurant.

Back in his restaurant and focusing more on his health James has been able to slim down in the past few years. At his best the chef lost an impressive five stone.T

alking about how he has managed to change his ways he said: “I no longer stuff my face with really bad things such as takeaway pizza, Mars bars and fizzy soft drinks, which I used to have tons of during my working day, just like almost every other chef in the country.

“Now I eat fish twice a week as well as loads of vegetables and fresh fruit.”

In addition to diet changes, the chef started using a pedometer in the kitchen and regularly racking up to 16 miles a day.

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The NHS states that symptoms of coronary heart disease includes the following:

  • Chest pain (angina)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Pain throughout the body
  • Feeling faint
  • Feeling sick (nausea).

The condition builds-up over a number of years and increasingly blocks the heart’s blood supply with fatty substances.

The British Heart Foundation also urges people to be aware of the dangers a family history of heart disease can cause.

Crucially, it explains that if your father or brother was under the age of 55 when diagnosed or your mother or sister was under the age of 65 when they were diagnosed, you have what is called a strong family history.

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