Chef seeking treatment over thefts
Celebrity chef Antony Worrall Thompson has said he will start psychiatric treatment following his arrest for shoplifting cheese and wine from Tesco.
The Ready Steady Cook star said he had been racking his brains to work out why he did it but was at a loss to explain his behaviour.
"There is absolutely no reason," he told the Daily Express. "I'm totally embarrassed, apologetic and gutted for my family and friends."
The 60-year-old, who is a food writer for the newspaper, said he wondered whether he had taken the items as a cry for help after being under "incredible stress".
He said: "We've moved home, which is stressful and it means I have to take two hours of every day driving to the restaurant and back. But I can't really blame that. There have been other things, including the funerals of a couple of close friends. I've had health problems too and have given up smoking and I've been anaemic so I'm more tired than usual.
"I'm here (at the restaurant) pretty much every opening hour. I'm 60 years old and it is incredibly tiring. I probably shouldn't do 12-hour days. And I didn't have any time off over Christmas when these things happened."
But he insisted he did not really want to blame his actions on stress.
There had been "massive trauma" in his life and he was abused as a child, he said, but he accepted that he could not blame his childhood for his conduct either. He also denied the problem was kleptomania and said he did not do it for the thrill of it.
"I just don't know what was going on in my head," he said. "It's like a little devil sitting at my shoulder or something. Normally I'm a strong guy but something's made me snap and I just don't know what. I hope I can get over this with some help."
He added that he hoped a psychoanalyst would help him discover what sent him "over the edge" and said he expected to be severely criticised for his conduct. "I hope I'm not going totally gaga in my old age," he continued. "I have wondered whether it's something like that but I hope 60 is too young for something like Alzheimer's."