celebrity

Everyone smelt and hunger makes you crazy: Tanya Hennessy on what I'm A Celeb was really like.

The first thing Tanya Hennessy did when she left the set of I’m A Celebrity was drink “a lot of alcohol”.

“I drank pina coladas by the pool and watched a warthog touch itself. It was great,” the comedian laughs.

The social media phenomenon has spent the last three weeks in the South African jungle, deprived of life’s luxuries, before being the sixth celebrity eliminated.

Hennessy told Mamamia she lost nine kilos during her time in the jungle.

“I now want to be on the cover of a magazine [with the headline] ‘Tanya’s drastic weight loss’,” the 33-year-old jokes.

In camp, Hennessy consumed just 800 calories a day – 1200 calories less than the average woman is recommended to eat to maintain their weight.

“I was starving the whole time,” she says, “and it makes you crazy. That’s why people lose it, they are extremely hungry and really tired.”

Tanya Hennessy Im A Celebrity
Tamya Hennessy lost nine kilos in three weeks while on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! Image: Channel 10.

Besides the famine, the best-selling author shared there are some aspects viewers are never aware of. The toilets in particular, Hennessy says, was the most surprising part about camp.

Why? Because there was a "family of snakes" living in them. Oh.

"We couldn't use the toilet for a couple of days because of the snakes. It kept happening.

"You go to the toilet, and you're wondering, 'Can I have some stars? Because I went through a literal trial in there.'"

Hennessy continued: "They never show the door of the toilets and how gross it is in there. You literally pee into a bucket.

"But I didn't care about the bucket. I cared about the snakes in there."

So, what else don't the viewers not know about being in the jungle? How much everyone stinks, Tanya laughs.

"You have to wash your clothes in a sink where you wash all the food. Your clothes are just constantly filthy. My underwear was so rank and I didn't wash my bra the entire time I was there.

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"You had organic soap to wash them in but it just never would get clean.

"Everyone reeks. I cannot tell you how bad everyone smelt. The deodorant barely works."

Side note... While on I'm A Celeb, Tanya Hennessy opened up about being bullied during high school. Watch a snippet here.

Video by Network 10

Beyond the brutalities were the "life-long friendships" formed with her fellow camp-mates. Two people she formed an especially close bond with were Geordie Shore star Charlotte Crosby and Married At First Sight participant Ryan Gallagher. Crosby and Gallagher have formed a romantic connection in the jungle.

But despite their seemingly authentic attraction to one another, speculation on social media has been rife that Crosby and Gallagher's relationship is fake.

Hennessy, having witnessed it first hand, could not disagree more, telling Mamamia: "I can't tell you how sincerely I believe their relationship is real.

"Charlotte wears her heart on her sleeve, she can't be fake. And Ryan is a sensitive soul - he is just a really nice person. The way he talks about her and the way he cares for her, it's really genuine and sweet. It's 1000 per cent genuine."

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Now, as Hennessy returns to her normal life, there is one aspect of jungle-living that she will miss - the absence of her phone. She tells Mamamia she hopes to maintain a more healthy relationship to social media.

"I think I had a really problematic addiction to [my phone] and I think it was really distracting me from being really present, and being present is a really good thing when you suffer anxiety.

"When I was able to be truly present in the jungle, those were the best times I had in there - when I was able to really surrender and just be in the moment."

She adds: "I think moving forward, that's what I'm going to be looking for. The more present I stay, the better person I will be and the better my mental health will be for it."

As for what's next, Hennessy has finished her second book, after her first one became a best-seller.

"I'm so hyped because it took me a really long time to write. I finished it the day I went into the jungle," Hennessy says, adding she will also have a show at the Melbourne Comedy Festival in April.

"I'm really excited for 2020. I got to start it in the best possible way."


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