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Actress Rula Lenska, 69, answers our weekly health quiz

 
  • The former EastEnders actress performs moderate exercise and eats her greens
  • Her vices include chips doused in vinegar and occasional packs of cigarettes 
  • She has long suffered with a problematic neck due to scoliosis (a twisted spine) 

James Draper For Mailonline

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Still performing well! Actress Rula Lenska balances health with indulgence 

Still performing well! Actress Rula Lenska balances health with indulgence 

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.

EVER DIETED?

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.

ANY VICES?

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 

Vanity: Ms Lenska often ponders the need for a lower facelift to enhance her appeal 

Vanity: Ms Lenska often ponders the need for a lower facelift to enhance her appeal 

HANGOVER CURE?

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. 

BIGGEST PHOBIA?

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.

 

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