Actress Halle Berry, 50, has come a long way since her beauty pageant days.
The former miss USA runner up and winner of Miss World, started out playing smaller roles in Die Another Day, Swordfish and and Why Do Fools Fall In Love before landing her dream role in Monster’s Ball, for which she won the Best Actress Oscar in 2003.
Halle was diagnosed with type 2 Diabetes 12 years ago but that hasn’t slowed her down. In fact, it’s made her stronger and more determined.
Her secrets to staying young
“I’ve never felt defined by my age. When I was young, I felt older than my years and as I get older, I feel younger. I define myself by where I am in life, and what I’m going through and what I still need to learn. This keeps me young at heart.
Diabetes has given me the strength and toughness I needed in my life. When I was 10 years old, my teacher told me I was going to be given a gift when I grew up and diabetes turned out to be it. Success demands a willingness to face reality, no matter how painful. My diabetes is manageable and I don’t have any complications that come with it. But I still have to deal with it and I’m insulin dependent. Diabetes saved my life. I am healthier now than I ever was.
I’m not body obsessed. I don’t need to have the best bum or the best abs. And I believe my physical appearance doesn’t diminish me or my talent in any way. My diet is geared towards managing my diabetes, so I try to eat four small meals a day. I like to feel strong and healthy. I want to avoid any form of plastic surgery. I hope I’m ageing gracefully.
I felt like a light went on when I turned 40. I’ve become really comfortable with my sexuality, it’s part of being a woman. I don’t make excuses for it anymore. I’ve come to the point where I don’t care what people think anymore. I feel I have a right to be authentic and say what I want to say and not accept what doesn’t feel right.
I’m lucky I have been blessed with good genes and I use a good cleanser, toner and moisturiser. I also get regular facials and have a paraffin wax system at home. I use it twice a week on my hands, feet and elbows. I don’t seek out the sun, but I don’t avoid it either.
When it comes to dressing up, less is more. I try wear the clothes and not let the clothes wear me. I sometimes put things on and it feels a little too much and just isn’t right. I like to keep it simple.
I’m learning to be happy no matter what’s happening in my life. That’s what life is all about. You can be happy even in your lowest moments. I’m happy, alive and healthy. I believe we often make our own problems and so does society. There are lessons we all have to learn. You can’t experience real joy until you’ve experienced real pain.
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