Health scan lifestyle Q&A


Rachel Allen, chef and ambassador for Concern’s 1,000 Days campaign

Do you think you have a healthy lifestyle?

I do. I’m very aware of what I eat and I’m conscious of the need to exercise to keep myself fit and full of energy. I adore my glass of wine in the evening but it’s about balance.

How often do you exercise?

I’d love to be telling you I exercise four times a week, but the reality is it’s three on a good week. I go to the gym and I run. I have no willpower so I have to make a date with friends. Exercise isn’t something I adore doing at the time but I’m always so glad afterwards. I think: It will be over in an hour, I’ll just get through it. Then I feel fantastic.

Do you get your five a day?

I think I do, but I don’t stress if I haven’t. Fruit isn’t something I eat a huge amount of; it’s more vegetables. I make a lot of soup and it’s great for using up leftovers. That’s the easiest way of getting vegetables for me.

Do you worry?

Not a huge amount. But if I’ve had too much tea or coffee, I’ll wake up at 2am and that’s the time you worry. You feel you have no power to do anything at that time. So if I’m lying there worrying about forgetting something, I’ll write it down. I find that rids my mind of stresses and worries.

What do you do to relax?

I love the time of the evening when work is finished, the house is busy, there’s homework going on and I’m trying to get a bit of time with Isaac to have a glass of wine while we’re cooking supper. I find it relaxing to run with my friend too. That’s kind of our bit of time together.

What’s your unhealthiest habit?

I love good crisps to go with my glass of wine or a gin and tonic. I never feel guilty having a slice of cake. I eat it only if I really want it and I enjoy every mouthful.

Good nutrition in the 1,000 days from pregnancy to a child’s second birthday can save one million lives a year. Join Concern’s 1000 Days Campaign at

In conversation with Joanne Hunt

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