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'I should probably get help': Freddie Flintoff admits he still battles bulimia

Albertina Lloyd
·Entertainment reporter, Yahoo UK
·3-min read
Freddie Flintoff opens up about bulimia in a new BBC documentary. (BBC)
Freddie Flintoff opens up about bulimia in a new BBC documentary. (BBC)

Freddie Flintoff has admitted he still suffers from bulimia and should “probably” seek help.

The 42-year-old Top Gear presenter and sportsman – who first revealed he had the eating disorder back in 2012 – opens up in anew BBC documentary Freddie Flintoff: Living With Bulimia which airs on Monday, 28 September.

Flintoff said that though he feels “in control” of his bulimia and has a “coping mechanism” to live with it, he has had times when he has struggled with it in the past year – and kept it secret from his family.

The former England cricket captain confessed: “I probably should get help – I know it's a problem and I know it needs addressing.”

Read more: Freddie Flintoff reveals he and wife secretly welcomed fourth child

Flintoff admitted there are still times in his life when he feels the urge to make himself sick after eating to feel good about his appearance, saying: “I've had periods when I've done it this year.”

Freddie Flintoff: Living with Bulimia explores how eating disorders can affect male sufferers. (BBC)
Freddie Flintoff: Living with Bulimia explores how eating disorders can affect male sufferers. (BBC)

And the father-of-four confessed he had even “lied a few times” to his wife Rachael, 42, in order to keep his bulimia a secret.

Flintoff said of his eating disorder: “I'm not going to lie, I enjoyed the results.

“I don't know whether it's just being a bloke, you feel you should be able to stop it.”

He added: “If I didn't do it, I didn't feel good about myself.”

The new documentary quotes statistics which estimate one in four bulimia sufferers are male, but 60% of them do not seek help.

Flintoff interviews Pam Nugent, whose young son Laurence died in 2009 after suffering a heart attack aged 24 through bulimia.

Flintoff admitted making the show had made him “question how I deal with my eating disorder”.

He added: “A 24-year-old had a heart attack through bulimia. It's that thing where you think it's never going to happen to you.

Freddie Flintoff presents Living with Bulimia on BBC One. (BBC)
Freddie Flintoff presents Living with Bulimia on BBC One. (BBC)

“I don't want to be a statistic, I don't want to be something that's read about in years to come, that something's happened to me.”

Flintoff said the reason he had not sought professional help was because everything else in his life was going so well.

Read more: Andrew Flintoff 'absolutely fine' following high-speed crash

He said: “I have this new career as a television presenter, which I love; I have an amazing family who support me through everything.”

Flintoff first admitted having bulimia while filming a documentary about training to be a boxer in 2012.

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 17:  Freddie Flintoff (R) and Rachael Flintoff arrive at the 2016 Australian Open party at Crown Entertainment Complex on January 17, 2016 in Melbourne, Australia.  (Photo by Graham Denholm/Getty Images)
Freddie Flintoff and wife Rachael Flintoff have four children. (Getty Images)

The TV presenter – real name Andrew Flintoff – rose to fame as a professional cricketer, captaining the England team. He retired from cricket in 2010 and trained to become a professional boxer in 2012.

He launched a TV presenting career and currently co-hosts BBC car show Top Gear alongside Paddy McGuinness and Chris Harris.

Flintoff married his wife in 2005 and they have four children Holly, 15 Corey, 14, Rocky, 12, and Preston, nine months.