Belfast Telegraph

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Me and my health: Rosie Barry discusses her lifestyle


By Helen Carson

The 27-year-old Comber actress, who is also a freelance drama workshop facilitator, is playing Gretel in the Mac's production of Hansel and Gretel which runs until January 7.

Q: Do you take regular exercise - and if so, what?

A: Going to the gym and walking are what keeps me fit. When I'm not working the way I am in panto I go to the gym two to three times a week where a personal trainer coaches me in strength and conditioning as well as some cardio. When I'm in Belfast my favourite place to walk is in Ormeau Park for about half an hour and there are nice places in Comber too.

Q: What's the worst illness you've had?

A: I suffer from ankylosing spondylitis - an autoimmune disease which causes chronic arthritis in the spine (vertebrae). I was diagnosed when I was 23 and, before being prescribed the right meds, I was in a lot of pain everyday. Exercise also really helps me to manage the disease.

Q: How healthy is your diet?

A: It's neither amazing nor awful. Breakfast is usually a cup of tea and a poached egg on toast with soup or a sandwich for lunch - but it depends on the day and where I am working. For dinner, I love stir fries, which are quick and tasty. I also enjoy fajitas or sometimes just order a takeaway - it's all about getting a healthy balance.

Q: Any bad habits?

A: I'm a Coca-Cola addict. I drink a 500ml bottle at least everyday. While I don't keep a record the most I have ever had is five to six large glasses in one day.

Q: Do you drink and/or smoke - if so, how much?

A: I'm mostly a social drinker and am prone to the odd glass of wine - Shiraz - with dinner or on a night out. I don't smoke.

Q: Do you take health supplements?

A: Cod liver oil for my joints for better flexibility.

Q: How do you take time out?

A: Lying on the sofa watching Netflix with my cat, Shadow. I'm currently enjoying the second season of The Crown and always go back to Mad Men. Reading is also a great way of unwind - I'm a huge Harry Potter fan and go back to these all the time. I have loved the books since I was a drama-loving teen.

Q: How well do you sleep?

A: Most night I will get seven to eight hours of sleep and am pretty lucky in that I've never suffered from insomnia. If I don't get enough sleep I will struggle to function as a human being on a very basic level. If I get less than six hours it won't go well for me.

When I'm performing in a show I will get to bed around 11pm or midnight at the latest and be up around 7.30am-8am to get myself ready to go to the theatre. When I'm not in a production I can sleep in until 10am when I like to have a cup of tea in bed and read the iPad.

Q: Do you worry about getting old?

A: I do and I don't. It is scary how fast time is going by but I'm not frightened of getting older. Ailments associated with ageing such as arthritis I already have and have managed for the past five years so that aspect of it doesn't bother me.

Q: What is your go-to product that keeps you feeling healthy?

A: I always feel better if my skin is looking good so I keep to a really strict daily skincare regime. I use a product range called Paula's Choice in the morning and at night-time. I also add some additional hydration to my skin at night by taking my make up off with Una Brennan Oil Cleanser which is full of vitamins.

  • Hansel & Gretel is at The Mac, Belfast until January 7, various times. For tickets and more details, visit or tel: 028 9023 5053

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