Still performing well! Actress Rula Lenska balances health with indulgence
DO YOU EXERCISE?
Yes, I do a lot of brisk walking and a little bit of swimming.
GET YOUR FIVE-A-DAY?
I eat a lot of vegetables but I’m careful with fruit because I have a problematic digestive system.
I’m 5 ft 8 in and I’ve weighed between nine and nine-and-a-half stone all my adult life. I never overeat, but I don’t think anything should be forbidden unless you’re allergic or intolerant to it.
Chips, ideally out of a paper bag with vinegar. I’m on and off with smoking; I do well and then some emotional hiccup happens, I’ll have one and it’s hard to give it up for a month or so.
ANY FAMILY AILMENTS?
My mother was in a concentration camp and was malnourished for two-and-a-half years. I think I’ve inherited my digestive issues from her.
WORST ILLNESS OR INJURY?
A problematic neck due to scoliosis (a twisted spine). If I’m sitting next to someone, I have to turn my body or my neck muscles go into spasm.
POP ANY PILLS?
I take vitamin C, zinc and echinacea in the winter to help fight off colds, and magnesium and calcium for the bones.
TRIED ALTERNATIVE REMEDIES?
I see an acupuncturist twice a month to help with my digestion, stiff neck, bad back and circulation.
EVER BEEN DEPRESSED?
Losing my hearing in my mid-50s was depressing. I now wear hearing aids in both ears. I also felt very low during both my divorces. On my mother’s side of the family, there is manic depression. Touch wood, I don’t think I have that.
Vanity: Ms Lenska often ponders the need for a lower facelift to enhance her appeal
The hair of the dog.
EVER HAVE PLASTIC SURGERY?
When I look in the mirror I think it would be nice to have a lift on the lower jaw to get rid of the beginnings of jowls, but my inner-self says: ‘What is the point unless it’s necessary?’
IS SEX IMPORTANT?
Not without feelings and love.
Heights, and I’m not a good flier.
COPE WELL WITH PAIN?
I certainly do. During a performance of Calendar Girls, I fell backstage and cracked a rib and tore my rotator cuff [a group of muscles and tendons in the shoulder], but I went straight back on stage. My rotator cuff was operated on and worked brilliantly for a few years, but has become detached once more and can’t be operated on again. I manage perfectly well.
LIKE TO LIVE FOREVER?
If I was in good health and surrounded by people of the same sort of age, yes.
Rula Lenska appears in Celebrity Taste of Italy – Friday, September 29, 9pm, on Channel 5.