Drink Those Raindrops Mrs. Robinson

Posted on: 01 July 2008 by Gareth Hargreaves

There can't be an older woman in Britain who doesn't envy actress Linda Gray her stunning figure. So how does she keep those curves so slender and curvaceous?

Californian actress Linda Gray is without doubt the consummate ‘lady’. The one-time Sue Ellen, TV wife of JR Ewing in the classic American soap Dallas never swears, never smokes and never ever bad-mouths colleagues.

Ask her the wrong questions about her personal life, such as why she divorced art director husband Ed Thrasher or who the current man in her life is and you may be met by a withering look that says quite firmly: ‘That’s rather rude and somewhat personal, isn’t it.’

The 61-year-old star is always impeccably dressed in classic, well-cut clothes which show off her trim and shapely figure to perfection . Except, that is, when she’s on stage at London’s Gielgud Theatre where she plays the role of the smoking, sexy and alluring Mrs. Robinson in The Graduate - and bares all before her 24 year old co-star David Nicolle.

Linda Gray - The GraduateWonderful Role

"It’s always been a wonderful role for any woman. And at this time of our life when Hollywood disposes of women past a certain age, it’s the most delicious female role," she says. "She’s sexy, she’s funny, she’s irreverent, she’s quite interesting. I think Hollywood is rather youth-obsessed and that’s the beauty of a role like Mrs. Robinson."

And now having dropped that famous towel for a brief moment on many occasions since she took over the role from Anne Archer on October 1st, even Ms. Gray’s most savage critic must admit that her voluptuously well-rounded figure shows no trace of a single anorexic bone - nor of an unwanted bulge.

Indeed millions of British women ‘d’une certaine age’, myself included, are green with envy. So how has she managed to enter her seventh decade without a sign of a single southward travelling bit of flesh.

Linda Gray - The GraduateExercise

"It has to be down to exercise as well as diet," says Claire MacEvilly at the British Nutrition Foundation. ‘"’m sure she must have a personal trainer on a daily basis - as well as watching her calorie intake carefully. There really is no reason why any woman shouldn’t have Linda Gray’s figure at 60 - if she takes proper care of her body."

The secret, says Claire, is in weight-bearing exercise such as aerobics and walking and in careful calorie counting. "Yes, I know slimming clubs such as Slimming World and Weight Watchers claim that calorie counting is not necessary on their plans - but on the bottom line that is exactly what they are doing. They just work it all out on a points system and give the whole idea a different slant," she says.

"Women aged between 50 and 74 need 1900 calories a day to maintain weight. Men need slightly more - a man aged between 51 and 59 needs 2550 - and between 60-74 he will use 2380."

"Older people need to be sure they have properly balanced diets, too. That means five portions of fruit and/or vegetables a day; plenty of carbohydrates in the form of bread, potatoes and pasta. They need iron in the form of fish or meat - absolutely vital as you get older - and also need to ensure that they take at least eight glasses of water or beverages a day. The years often rob older people of the sensation of thirst. You are less likely to feel thirsty and many older people suffer from dehydration without realising it."

So if ‘Mrs. Robinson’ helps herself to a ‘drink’ on stage during the performance, you can bet your firm-bottom dollar she’s downing water rather than gin or champers. All in the name of her figure, naturally.

By Andrea Kon

13th October 2001

Do you know any of the stars' secrets for keeping shapely as they grow older? If so why not share them with other 50connect readers in our Entertainment forum?

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