Published Tuesday, 04 March 2014
Simon Cowell will return as a judge on The X Factor later this year. (© Getty)
Cowell, who recently became a first-time dad, said he enjoys a few drinks in the early hours of the morning in order to enter a "calm place" and come up with his TV ideas.
But in an interview to promote X Factor musical I Can't Sing!, written by comic Harry Hill, Cowell said that he could not quit smoking.
"Harry trained as a doctor, he doesn't like my theory that although I smoke and drink I take supplements, so I'll be all right," he told the Radio Times.
"If I tried to cut out cigarettes completely, I would have a real problem: too boring. It's the same with drinking.
"But I'm pretty good at cutting back when I need to."
He added: "I have this expression, 'You never eat Indian food for breakfast'. I always think there is a time in your day when you can be creative.
"For me, one or two in the morning, couple of vodka and limes, couple of cigarettes, I'm in a calm place: I can think.
"I always say, 'One good idea a year can pay for your next ten years.' And that's all you need to do."
Previews of The X Factor musical have been postponed for the second time in a week with producers citing technical problems.
Cowell joked that I Can't Sing! would have to last longer than the Spice Girls stage show to be considered a success after Viva Forever! ran for seven months and was deemed a flop.
© UTV News