I must admit that I didn’t plan to watch this reality TV show, even though I found the trailers intriguing and I am a fan of Sandra Martin from Gogglebox. However, on the night “100 Years Younger in 21 Days” launched, I think there was an FA Cup match on, so I decided to watch the group of aged 50+ celebrities (with one exception) trip to a world famous rejuvenation clinic in Sardinia instead and hopefully learn something.
The series’ concept is this: to take 100 years off the collective faces, bodies and brains of the group of celebrities. They include June Brown (Dot Cotton) who at 90 is the oldest of the group, rock star bad boy Shaun Ryder, Russell Grant, Claire King, Sherrie Hewson, Roy Walker and Sid Owen. Sid and Shaun are the youngest, but their bodies, faces and brains don’t quite match their birth age. And this part of the programme was one of the most fascinating.
Each celeb had been put through a series of tests by researchers at the University of Westminster. The results revealed how they are ageing. The majority of them had a face age that was in some cases significantly older than their actual age and the same for their bodies. What was perhaps most shocking was the assessment of their brain age with some estimated 20 years older than their actual birth age. Only June Brown at 91 managed to have a younger brain age, which was an astonishing 59 years. Not bad for someone in her 90s. Sid Owen on the other hand, who is 46, was assessed as having a mental age of 67.
Having established what each one needed to work on, the team started on a 21-day programme including a fitness regime, dietary modification by the clinic’s fearsome nutritionist, ‘Thor’, and a series of therapeutic treatments, all overseen by the rather benevolent Professor Ian Philp CBE, Britain’s leading expert on longevity.
And this is where the fun began. A handsome fitness instructor who used to train Real Madrid footballers attempted to put the group through some simple stretching exercises. First to drop out was Shaun Ryder, who just couldn’t, or wouldn’t, do it. By contrast, after the exercise session, June went for a dip in the pool whilst the others looked on in awe and then gave a hilarious demonstration of her daily Tibetan yoga routine. You could say that Dot Cotton gave them all a look at her unmentionables, although I’m certain they were squeaky clean.
But, back to Shaun, who throughout the first episode was a constant ‘refusenik’ to just about everything he was asked to do. He was also ‘gang leader’ in breaking the ‘no alcohol’ rule, backed up by Sherrie Hewson and Claire King who strongly felt rewards were needed. It is entertainment after all, so I’m sure we’ll see more misdemeanours. However, Shaun, you really need to up your game, even if you do have a pain in your groin area.
The snail facials were intriguing, and yes, I have been searching the garden for some, and I was keen to see the results of Sherrie Hewson’s non-surgical facelift.
In the second episode, Thor introduced a punishing liquid only dietary regime, which made pretty much everyone deeply unhappy. Some also seem to have acquired doctor’s notes to let them off physical exercise. And Thor’s insistence that they use their own urine on their faces to help rejuvenate their skin was the start of another rebellion!
Two more episodes will reveal whether they have the will to knock 100 years off their face, body and brain age. At the moment, it looks doubtful.
Catch up on the series at ITV Hub.