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CELEBRITY HEALTH CHECK Debbie Allen, Radio Presenter

Do you have any ailments/health concerns?

I have a herniated disc in my back, so I try to look after it as best I can. Other than that, I'm as healthy as a horse, thankfully.

How would you rate your energy levels?

I have high levels of ferritin in my blood, (although I don't have haemochromatosis), so, tiredness is part of my day. Nothing that a sneaky nap doesn't sort out, though.

Do you get your five a day?

I do my level best to. I'm not a big fruit eater apart from the odd banana and berries with porridge. I much prefer vegetables and eat all of them all the time.

How would you rate your stress levels?

I'm very laid back and don't stress easily. I have suffered with depression most of my life, so, between medication and exercise, I'm in a good place.

How's your sleep?

I love my bed and could sleep on a bed of nails, so all good in that department.

Do you take supplements?

I take vitamin B6 daily to ease PMT and fish oil supplements for wellbeing.

Do you exercise?

I walk my two dogs daily and I train twice a week in BodyByrne in Clarendon Street where I am motivated by the fantastic staff.

Do you cook from scratch?

I cook everything from scratch, but, having said that, I'm not a Cordon Bleu chef. I eat cleanly during the week and tend to go a bit mental at the weekend.

How many alcoholic beverages would you consume in a week?

I'm a weekend drinker, I work evenings so I don't indulge during the week. I realise that this type of binge-drinking is not good for you, but that's my life, I'm afraid.

What would you find hard to give up?

I love cheese and although I don't gorge on the creamy ones any more, I would miss it if it were gone. If I'm completely honest, I would miss alcohol, even though I gave it up for eight months before, I would miss an Absolut vodka and diet 7 Up...sad but true.

Do you have any health goals?

I am healthier, fitter and stronger than I have ever been having lost three and a half stone in the last 18 months. I still need to lose the last stone though, so I need to eat a little less to get there.

Rate My Diet:

What I Ate Today

Breakfast: Scrambled egg whites with cherry tomatoes, feta cheese and three rice cakes

Lunch:

Wholemeal pitta with turkey, tomatoes, lettuce, gherkins and cucumber

Dinner:

Hake fillet with roasted mushrooms, courgette, peppers and onion

Snacks:

Small pack of popcorn and probiotic fat-free yogurt

Beverages:

Four mugs of tea, skimmed milk.

Extras – three vodka & diet 7 Ups – well, it is the weekend.

Elsa's Verdict

Congratulations on your weight-loss, Debbie.

Your current diet and exercise regime appears to be very good. I'd recommend that you try to limit or eliminate the diet soft drinks, as artificial sweeteners are linked to a host of health problems including weight issues (ironically enough).

Try substituting them with soda/sparkling water and a squeeze of fresh lime.

Also, while it is important to limit refined carbohydrates while you are trying to lose weight, make sure that you still eat good quality wholegrain carbohydrates (oats, brown rice, quinoa) in moderation as they are packed with nutrients that boost our mood naturally.

One quarter of your plate should be filled with wholegrain carbohydrates at mealtimes.

Debbie Allen presents 'The Love Zone' weekdays at 7pm on Q102


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