Louise Minchin reveals health condition that could affect her ‘I’m a Celebrity’ stint

Louise MInchin, I'm a celebrity
Louise Minchin left the BBC Breakfast team in September (Image credit: ITV)

Popular former BBC Breakfast host and I’m a Celebrity… Get Me Out of Here! contestant Louise Minchin is renowned for her Team GB triathlon skills, but less well known is that she harbours a health condition – Raynaud’s syndrome.

Louise told The Sun: “I feet the cold really badly, I have this thing called Raynaud’s Syndrome, which means my hands and feet go numb very quickly, even in supermarkets. So cold is a big thing for me.”

Raynaud’s is a condition which affects the blood circulation and symptoms can include pain and numbness in the fingers and toes, not ideal for a couple of weeks in the north Wales countryside and some of the extreme trials on the ITV celebrity reality show.

While not usually a severe illness, Raynaud’s can be a sign of a more serious condition.

In 2019 she thanked Breakfast viewers on social media for advice when she was suffering from the syndrome.

The condition is certain to make some tasks more difficult for Louise, 53, in Grywych Castle, although her recent history as an age-group triathlete representing Team GB at the world finals in Australia and the Netherlands will help her deal with the more physical challenges.

Her luxury item will also help with her Raynaud’s. She said: “I’m really delighted with my luxury item. I have brought with me a fluffy hot water bottle that actually belongs to my daughter.

“So not only is it going to be very helpful to keep me warm, but it’ll also remind me of home.”

Viewers are well used to waking up with Louise on BBC One most days, but on I’m a Celebrity she has no knowledge about when she’s being filmed and she has taken steps to avoid being inadvertently caught in a compromising pose – by practising taking showers in a full swimsuit at home!

She told the Mirror: “There’s definitely something different because obviously on Breakfast I know when the mics are not on and I know when the cameras are off.

“But yeah, I think at first I will try to remember there are cameras around me and microphones around me all the time. But I’m sure very soon I’m going to forget that.

“I’ve just got to trust that I can just be myself. I haven’t got a bikini – I won’t be wearing a bikini in the shower.

“That’s how I’ve managed to get around that one. I won’t be revealing more of myself than I mean to.”

Louise added that fans will see her in a whole new light on I’m a Celebrity: “I think viewers will be surprised, first of all, I’m going to look completely different to how they normally see me sitting on the sofa, looking mostly well put together with my hair nicely done, my makeup, etc. So I think that’s going to be a bit of a difference for them.”

Is Louise likely to become Queen fo the Castle in 2021? She is well-supported at around 7/1 with most bookmakers, who have installed Frankie Bridge as the early favourite at 4/1.

Watch I'm a Celebrity on ITV from Sunday, Nov 21. 

Patrick McLennan

Patrick McLennan is a London-based journalist and documentary maker who has worked as a writer, sub-editor, digital editor and TV producer in the UK and New Zealand. His CV includes spells as a news producer at the BBC and TVNZ, as well as web editor for Time Inc UK. He has produced TV news and entertainment features on personalities as diverse as Nick Cave, Tom Hardy, Clive James, Jodie Marsh and Kevin Bacon and he co-produced and directed The Ponds, which has screened in UK cinemas, BBC Four and is currently available on Netflix. 

An entertainment writer with a diverse taste in TV and film, he lists Seinfeld, The Sopranos, The Chase, The Thick of It and Detectorists among his favourite shows, but steers well clear of most sci-fi.