BAKE Off champion John Waite warned the latest batch of wannabe bakers to be careful what they wish for after winning the show ruined his life.
The 33-year-old star appeared on the show in 2012 when he was 23 but struggled to cope with his newfound fame.
The cake maker became a dancefloor star on Dancing with the Stars, where he placed second to winners Rose Ayling-Ellis and Giovanni Pernis in the series’ first same-sex couple.
Recording in Telegraphhe said, “Sometimes I wish I had never been on the show because it actually threw me completely off the stable path of life.
“I could blame the production company or the BBC.
“It would be easy to point the finger and say that they didn’t give me advice on how to deal with the transience of the industry or how to understand the temporality of my attraction.
“They didn’t, and perhaps in the wake of the breakdowns and suicides of reality TV stars, there needs to be a major reform in how contestants prepare and navigate their post-show lives.
“But I don’t think it would make the slightest difference even if they did.
He says he thought he would never win the show and sometimes even regrets agreeing to appear.
The baker admits that his work stream started to dry up as more members showed up and that made him hit the bottle.
John said, “However, I couldn’t remember the old mantra: be careful what you wish for.
“Because when the next batch of Bake Off stars came along, my appeal waned.
“From year to year there were fewer working days, and fewer financial proposals.
“The life I was used to was slowly dissolving. Spending more days alone at home, waiting by the phone like an anxious 1980s teenager calling his love to call, made my already depressed state worse.
“I drank more than I should have and unwisely posted on Instagram and Twitter. If I knew then what I know now, would I do it all again? Absolutely. But I would approach it very differently.”
He says his advice to this year’s contestant would be: “Seize opportunities while you can, take the money and run if you want, but don’t take it too seriously.
“Most importantly, don’t let yourself be watered down by it all.
“The person you were before the show is the best version of you; this is the person you were always meant to be.”
John Waite was only 23 years old and preparing for law exams when he blinded the judges.
The Manchester champion has decided to put his bar career on hold in favor of the respected Le Cordon Bleu school.
John, who has been baking since the age of five, has since managed to build a successful media career.
He has appeared as a regular chef on Lorraine ITV and has made guest appearances on What’s Cooking, This Morning and Sunday Brunch.
His involvement with Strictly in partnership with professional dancer Johannes Radebe was a huge success and earned him a role in the West End.
John is among the famous faces that have joined OnlyFans.
He has already shared cheeky nude shots with fans on social media before moving on to the subscription site.
John has also published three cookbooks: John Whaite Bakes, John Whaite Bakes At Home and Perfect Plates In Five Ingredients.
He previously admitted that the pressure of winning the show can be “intimidating and overwhelming,” but he’s learned to deal with fame.
In 2018, he opened a cooking school on the family farm where he grew up in Lancashire.