Jo Whiley on how she keeps her body pain-free as she ages

There’s no denying that Jo Whiley is the epitome of a rock chick.

He’s DJed on BBC Radio 1 and 2 for over 30 years, presented Glastonbury for almost as long and mingles with rock royalty, both professionally and socially.

But while the broadcasting genius, who joined Radio 1 in 1993 and currently presents a weeknight Radio 2 show, is nowhere near 58, like many people her age, the mother of four is feeling the passage of time. .

She has arthritis in her fingers, is watching her cholesterol, and her busy lifestyle makes her feel more tired than when she was younger.

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“I have a lot of aches and pains, and while I’m hoping the arthritis is just contained to my fingers at the moment, I’m sure it will eventually spread elsewhere,” she says sadly.

“With arthritis getting worse and getting older, over the last year I feel like I’ve gone through a bit of a health overhaul and I’ve realized I need to eat better foods for energy levels to age, I I’m more tired because I work late. at night.

“And I’m also doing my ’90s Anthems gigs, which are really physically demanding, and it means I don’t get many days off in the week. But I just thought I’d try to eat better food, so I eat a lot of fruit. I’m into blueberries all the time, and raspberries and strawberries and then lots of greens.”

Whiley became a pescetarian last year, joining music executive husband Steve Morton and children India, 31, Jude, 25, Cassius, 23, and Coco, 15, all vegetarians or vegans . “It feels like the right thing to do and I feel really healthy about it,” she says.

Jo and her husband Steve try to fit a healthy diet and exercise into their busy lives (India Whiley-Morton/PA)

And she’s doing her best to beef up her diet with healthy additions, explaining: “For years, my mom was saying you should take oils, and while you’re doing it, reject everything your mom says. But now I’m taking turmeric and oil omega and cider vinegar and magnesium to help me sleep at night.

“I’m throwing everything I can at it. I’m also taking collagen. I’m waiting for the results and I’m always optimistic. It’s worth a shot, I’ll try anything really.”

Her husband recently had his cholesterol checked, as both parents have high cholesterol, and Whiley says: “It turned out he has high cholesterol, he’s really fit and athletic, so it was a bit of a shock. advised that medication might be the route he needed, and he didn’t want to do that, so his instinct was to try to do it with diet.”

Whiley says Morton, 59, now avoids the wrong fats, eats more vegetables, fish and fruit, uses cholesterol-lowering food Benecol and is “staying on track”. Her cholesterol levels are much healthier now than they were, she says. He also just had his cholesterol checked and his total level is 4.8 which he says is “not too bad”.

Exercise is one lifestyle factor that can help maintain healthy cholesterol levels, and Whiley is passionate about being active. He swam for Northampton when he was younger and says: “Swimming, I love swimming, I really do. If I’m ever feeling stressed, or if it’s all getting a bit too much, I’ll go to the pool and just do 30 lengths or something, and it’s the best thing in the world for me, it keeps me fit, it keeps my head clear.”

She also runs, and does Pilates, explaining, “I’ve just decided that as I get older I need to stop being so frantic about my exercise and maybe do something that stretches and tones, so I’m trying to embrace Pilates.”

And if that wasn’t enough, he also goes to the gym, where he sees a personal trainer. “He’s been getting me in shape every year for Glastonbury for years, so I was already training,” he says.

So does he really have to be fit for Glastonbury?

During the Women of the Year 2023 Luncheon and Awards. Getty Images

“No, I just don’t want to have bingo wings,” he laughs, but continues: “Oh my God, don’t get excited, Glastonbury is exhausting you cover miles and miles and miles, thousands of steps when you do Glastonbury. and all the parties”.

A love of exercise runs in the whole family, and Whiley says proudly: “I don’t bully my kids into doing it, but it’s been really lovely to see them grow up and naturally take up sport as a which helps them with their mental and general health. well-being.”

Her 15-year-old daughter recently took up boxing, which Whiley says has been brilliant for her, although she adds, on a personal note: “I can’t do it because I have arthritis in my fingers, which is the worst of world. I can’t imagine anything more painful. They don’t look particularly nice either.”

But thankfully Whileys’ arthritic fingers don’t stop her from doing a lot of other exercise, she adds: “My husband and I really like exercise, it’s a big part of our day, I think we do something almost every day . my overall well-being I’m very passionate about exercise.”

Jo Whiley is an ambassador for the Benecol Every Heart Deserves One campaign, which raises awareness of the importance of regular cholesterol tests in partnership with Heart UK..

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