In the past, the star has admitted to being health conscious, especially after losing her mother to stomach cancer at the age of 68. The tragedy also urged the singer to get health tests every year, including a laparoscopy, which allows surgeons to access the inside of the tummy. Keeping on top of her health has really paid off for the star, and in an interview with the Daily Star, she revealed some of the secrets into how she manages it.
The star confessed that her top health secrets include a combination of diet, exercise and positive thinking.
A few years back, the star fought against pneumonia – an infection that inflames the air sacs in one or both lungs. These air sacs tend to fill with fluid or pus, causing a severe cough.
Lulu described the condition as her “worst illness” when talking to the Daily Mail, but at the time she only thought that it was a bad cough, until doctors said she “should have been thrown into hospital”.
Recovering from pneumonia, this was not the only health condition the star has faced. After sadly witnessing her father Eddie pass away from high cholesterol, she decided to monitor her own, to which she made a shocking discovery.
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“My GP told me that I had raised cholesterol,” recalls the singer. “That really frightened me, as it’s one of the biggest risk factors for coronary heart disease.
“My father’s death – at the age of 71 – was terrible. I loved him dearly. He had worked in the meat market in Glasgow for years and was a great singer.
“Unfortunately, he didn’t really take care of his body and he’d had plenty of health warnings that he ignored.
“So even though I’ve always tried to look after myself, when I discovered that I had raised cholesterol, memories of my dad’s illness spurred me on and I made sure that I did something about it.”
Motivated to lower her cholesterol levels, Lulu immediately changed her diet. She revealed that she threw away ice-cream from the freezer and stopped eating butter in sandwiches, as well as including three cholesterol-lowering foods into her diet every single day.
Kicking off the day with a cup of hot water and lemon, a coffee and porridge, muesli and yoghurt, the star understands the importance of the first meal of the day.
The NHS explains that examples of cholesterol-lowering food includes oily fish, nuts, seeds, avocados and vegetable oils and spreads, all of which Lulu admits to eating, including drinking “loads of water”.
“If I had to rate my health on a scale of one to 10, I’d give myself a nine. I’ve always taken care to exercise and to eat a good die. I eat organic food, because there are so many chemicals in non-organic produce,” she added.
“But I believe in balance so if I fancy a bit of chocolate, I’ll have it and enjoy it. The danger point of the day comes around 4pm when I crave something sweet.
“Why should I deny myself? We all need little guilty pleasures in life, so I allow myself a wee slice of cake now and then.”
In addition to her diet, Lulu also keeps physically fit, committing to daily walks and fitness classes.
“I’d stopped exercising under doctor’s orders when I had pneumonia. But once I was better, I didn’t get back into the habit of going to the gym,” the singer said at the time.
“So I also started taking brisk walks in the park with my two dogs and went back to yoga classes.”
As well as yoga, the star also enjoys dance class, specifically salsa dancing, which makes for a fun form of exercise.
The NHS stresses the importance of exercising, especially for those over the age of 65, who can spend 10 hours or more each day sitting or lying down.
The health body recommends that every individual should aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate activity every week. Examples of moderate activity includes:
- Walking fast
- Water aerobics
- Riding a bike on level ground or with few hills
- Playing doubles tennis
- Pushing a lawn mower.