Tom Conti, 80, health: Actor stays healthy despite never being ‘terrifically fit’ – how?
Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence scene with Tom Conti and David Bowie
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Conti is set to feature in the credits of the Christopher Nolan film Oppenheimer as Albert Einstein in 2023. He also recently featured in a short-film called Censure this year. Although he admitted he is not “terrifically fit”, the star has out-lived his parents significantly. His father, who reportedly smoked 60 cigarettes a day, died of a heart attack aged 63, while his mother died in her 70s from a brain tumour. Unlike his father, Conti has few bad habits and has been open about his efforts to cut down on sugar. He also admitted he’s on a diet of magnesium, anti-inflammatories, and statins to manage his health.
Although he said he was a “little bit heavy”, Conti said he puts effort in to “limit what I eat and avoid sugar” during a Daily Mail questionnaire when he was 73.
He said: “At a certain age you start to get rotund, so I limit what I eat and avoid sugar.
“I am 5ft 10.5in and I weigh about 12st 3lb, which is a little heavy. I don’t weigh myself – usually, I go by how tightly I need to fasten my belt,” he said.
He also still moves around a lot, despite having “never been terrifically fit”.
During the interview he detailed how he would “do a lot of stair work”. He also stands while he is writing on his laptop.
Although Conti is in relatively positive health today, he revealed that he has had some quite significant health scares over the years.
He was diagnosed with tuberculosis as a teenager – a bacterial disease where growths grow in the body tissues like the lungs.
His immune system managed to fight off the condition but he required treatment for six months.
Conti also had his gallbladder removed due to gallstones.
On top of getting exercise, making sure he stands up a lot, and monitoring sugar levels, he is also sure to consume healthy nutrients.
He makes sure to eat fruit and vegetables but doesn’t count how many portions he has had.
The actor isn’t unrealistic about his health. He is well aware of his own mortality and even suggested living forever would “become tedious”.
He said: “Being immortal if you stayed 43 wouldn’t be so bad but becoming immortal when you were a bit doddery wouldn’t be good.”
As a result, Conti takes statins as a “precautionary measure for heart health”, and consumes magnesium to reduce leg cramps.
Magnesium is known to contribute to flexibility and prevents injury by loosening the muscles. Low magnesium levels lead to a buildup of lactic acid, which can cause pain and tightness, and even cramp.
Meanwhile, the Mayo Clinic explains that Statins are drugs that can help lower your cholesterol – reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke, which are caused by the buildup of cholesterol on the blood vessel walls.
The actor also requires medication for pain relief.
During his work for the theatre performance Whose Life is it Anyway? Some scenery dropped on his head and damaged the soft tissue in his lower back.
As a result, he takes anti-inflammatory pills to cope when the pain gets bad.
All-in-all, Tom Conti is somebody who represents a casual approach to health – doing what he needs to help any health issues but straying away from any “magic” diets or “fix-all” solutions.
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