This Morning star Gok Wan has revealed that his job on the ITV daytime show “saved” him from his “biggest fear” in lockdown.
Gok made the admission while speaking exclusively to Entertainment Daily to launch his charity team up with McCain and the charity Family Fund.
Looking back, the chef and fashion journalist admitted: “I had a terrible time at the very beginning of lockdown.”
What did This Morning star Gok Wan say about his ‘biggest fear’?
Gok revealed: “I really panicked with the lockdown. My biggest fear is isolation. So for me I had a terrible time at the very beginning.”
“I’ve been on there for years now and it was a real saviour for me last year because they allowed me to continue working on the show,” he explained.
“We were doing some of it remotely, some of the fashion and cooking from my house, then when the studio allowed guests in we were able to go in.
“It’s one of the hardest working teams in television. Everyone is devoted to the show. The term family is over-used but the sense of family you get from that show is remarkable.
“It’s a really loved show, people take ownership of that show and rightly so. It becomes a benchmark of their day. I feel proud to be part of that brand that allows people to be educated.”
Asked what Holly and Phil are like behind the scenes, Gok revealed: “It’s work, like every single job is, but they’re gorgeous.”
However, he added: “They’re really lovely. Really lovely lovely people.”
Gok’s friendship with Ruth Langsford
So too is former Friday host Ruth Langsford – and Gok has become something of a guru for the TV presenter.
My biggest fear is isolation. So for me I had a terrible time at the very beginning.
“Recently she started running and I’ve become this go-to person for people who have started running.
“Alice Beer’s started running so I got texts from her this morning, I got Ruth out there running.
“Ruth is gorgeous, really really sweet. She’s doing so well and I’m so proud of her,” he said.
This Morning chef Gok Wan admits ‘constant struggle’ with eating disorder
As avid This Morning viewers will know, Gok recently completed the Couch to 5k and lost a lot of weight in the process.
However, he said his weight is going to be a “constant struggle” for him after being diagnosed with anorexia in his early twenties.
“It’s going to be a constant struggle, it’s a disease, and any of us that have it are going to struggle for the rest of their lives,” he said.
However, Gok added: “I’m really lucky, I’ve managed to develop the tools to deal with it when it becomes overbearing.
“As I’ve got older I’ve learned to live with it and also being able to talk about it, that for me has been very cathartic.
“It does affect my mental health but I’m lucky because I’ve been able to turn that into a positive. So now I can live with my disease quite amicably.”
And, while Gok admitted that he did gain weight last year like everyone else, he doesn’t weigh himself because he says it’s a “trigger” for him.
“I’ve managed to maintain how I feel about myself,” he said.
“It’s not a weight thing it’s a self-esteem thing and I feel fitter than I’ve ever felt in my life.”
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What’s the campaign with McCain and Family Fund about?
Gok has teamed up with McCain and Family Fund for The Teatime Takeover, a new campaign celebrating the importance of mealtime moments for all families.
As a result of the team up, Gok met a lady called Anita and her 17-year-old daughter Mya, who is autistic.
As well as chatting to the family, he also created a delicious meal for them that brought back gorgeous family memories.
And it’s those moments, Gok admitted, that are massively important after the pandemic “turned our lives upside down”.
“Coming from a family of foodies, food is massively important for me, and the effects of the pandemic mean our lifestyles have been turned upside down,” he said.
‘Really inspiring’ charity drive
“And if that’s happened to me – and I have a really privileged life – then what’s it like for people raising a disabled or seriously ill child?
“So McCain put me in touch with Family Fund and their aim is to help any family out there that is struggling, whether it’s financially or they need something to make their life easier.
“I met one of the families, a woman called Anita who has a 17-year-old daughter called Mya who is autistic, we had a lovely chat, really inspiring.
“Family Fund have done so much to support Mya’s creativity. She is a fabulous artist, and if it wasn’t for Family Fund she wouldn’t have been able to develop those skills.”
Gok concluded: “It’s great to feel in the hardest year of our lives that so much good is still happening.
“Sometimes it’s so easy to focus in on how rough we’ve had it but there is so much gorgeousness about and this is what this campaign is all about.”
Gok is supporting McCain and Family Fund through a new social campaign Teatime Takeover. The new partnership follows a pledge from McCain to help Family Fund achieve its goal of supporting 150,000 families raising disabled or seriously ill children. For more information, visit the website here.
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