Elizabeth Hurley, 56, says no to sweets, alcohol and smoking: 'I haven’t eaten processed food for 100 years'

·3-min read
Elizabeth Hurley, 56, say she avoids processed food. (Photo: Marco Piraccini/Archivio Marco Piraccini/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)
Elizabeth Hurley, 56, say she avoids processed food. (Photo: Marco Piraccini/Archivio Marco Piraccini/Mondadori Portfolio via Getty Images)

At 56, Elizabeth Hurley feels younger than ever. 

The British actress told the Sunday Times that the age she feels inside "is getting frighteningly lower.” 

“I am more immature by the moment — my son is more mature than me," said Hurley. "I used to be grown-up but I’ve lost it.”

As for how she maintains her youthful appearance, Hurley credits a healthy diet that's heavy on vegetables. 

“I haven’t eaten processed food for 100 years,” she explained. “I don’t eat sweets, I drink little alcohol, I don’t smoke but I deeply regret that I once did. I have learnt to eat lighter and not so late. I think one of the most transformative things that I’ve done is making 50 percent of what I eat vegetable matter. If you have a slice of toast for breakfast, have an apple too. Counteract everything with vegetables.” 

While she eschews sweets, she does swear by spoonfuls of peanut butter. 

“I have one spoon, then another, and I’ve emptied the jar before you know it,” she said. 

She's also not a fan of excess plastic surgery. 

“No! I don’t think it makes you look younger, I think it just makes you look like you’ve got filler," she said. "It’s not my cup of tea.”

Her one indulgence? An occasional piece of nicotine gum.

"I stopped smoking 10 years ago," said Hurley. "But I can’t give up the Nicorette.”

Hurley is known for snapping bikini photos of herself to promote her beachwear line, giving the internet plenty to talk about with her saucy swimsuit shots. But ultimately, she found herself reveling in her time at home in the English countryside, where she holed up with her family. That period has served as an important lesson for Hurley, who was used to the constant travel and grind of the entertainment industry.

“The lockdowns had a profound effect on me. I came to realize that I’ve been in fight-or-flight mode for 30 years. I’ve found time to remember what my instincts were telling me to do rather than being on a constant treadmill of flying once or twice a week, packing endlessly, juggling jobs, juggling everything, not really having much time to sit down, to ever, I don’t know… just sit down," said Hurley. 

Still, she says she's incredibly grateful for the experiences she's had along the way. 

“Of course I take full responsibility for all of it. I’ve loved my treadmill — it has been a great treadmill, very kind to me — but I think 30 years of not really having much time to sit down, then suddenly stopping was, well, it sort of restarted me again," she said. "I’m now more the person I was when I first moved from the suburbs.”

As for who that person is, Hurley said she's now "a dreamier, more introspective person, somebody who genuinely enjoys spending time with my family, doing the things I love, like writing and gardening. I’ve done enough holidays to last anybody a lifetime, I’ve been to enough parties to last anyone a lifetime. Frankly I could stay home and deadhead my roses forever and it would be fine.”

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