The TV chef said the sudden death forced him to revaluate his life.
Opening up about his decision to stand down from the BBC cookery show after 15 years, he told the Loose Women panel: “I’ve readdressed the balance, I didn’t have it for 15 years when I had too much television.
“Work was [a] fundamental [reason], I hadn’t had a day off for several years, or two days off together for nearly three years.”
Recounting the incident, Martin said: “I was doing a gig abroad and I was chatting to a gentleman the same age as me, same work ethic, really keen on work.
“He went out on stage literally five minutes after I spoke to him to present an award and he was dead before he hit the floor.
“I got back on the plane and thought now I’m going to readdress the balance.”
Martin - who was on the show to discuss his new series James Martin’s American Adventure - revealed that he now goes into his restaurant more than he could before as he now has more time to do so.
He joked that people often ask him what he is doing there, to which he quipped: “It’s my name on the front!”