Starvation Tips From Gwyneth Paltrow

Kelley-Jensen2Author: Kelley Filice Jensen

Gwyneth Paltrow has some good ideas, and her enthusiasm is catching.   However, she also has some bad ideas, some REALLY bad ideas.  Excerpts from her newest cookbook are full of those bad ideas.  They read like a manifesto of neurosis, hypochondria, body image crisis, and rationalizations that amounts to little more than tips on how to starve oneself without using the word “anorexia”.  Because THAT would make you sound unhealthy.  It is also warning not to take too much diet and nutrition advice from celebrities.  They are under so much pressure to look a certain way that it clouds their judgment.  Here are some of her bad ideas, along with some of the good ones, taken both from both of her cookbooks and website.  Health Care Reform is here, get a free health insurance quote and learn more!

Bad Idea #1 – Creating a health condition out of a body issue

In the book she states that, “One sunny afternoon in London, in the spring of 2011, I thought — without sounding overly dramatic — that I was going to die,”. “I had just served lunch in the garden at home . . . I had a vague feeling that I was going to faint, and I wasn’t forming thoughts correctly . . . I got a searing pain in my head, I couldn’t speak, and I felt as if I couldn’t breathe. I thought I was having a stroke.”  Turns out, it was a panic attack and a bad headache.  She claims that her doctors demanded that she cut out pretty much all food.

Now, come on Gwyneth!  We know you feel a lot of pressure to be 10 pounds too thin:  the camera does add 10 pounds.  We get it.  If paparazzi were chasing us down with a camera constantly, we would not want to be a normal weight either. And, we relate to a love of food that is in direct competition with the way you look. We understand that after one too many delicious meals, you probably feel the need to starve a bit to keep up that appearance that is so hard to maintain.  Just say that.  Tell us, “Here is what I eat when I know that I will be in a bathing suit, or on a red carpet or in a movie and cannot have one ounce of extra weight on camera.  This is what I eat when I cannot eat anything at all”.  Oddly, that is much more relatable than creating a health scare to justify not being able to eat your favorite foods.  Health is not to be toyed with or used as an excuse to justify maintenance of your appearance, no matter how gorgeous you are.  Blame vanity, blame the relentless media, but do not blame your health.  What is Covered CA?

Bad Idea #2 – Transferring your issues onto your children

She tells us that it turns out that “everyone in my house is intolerant of gluten, dairy, chickens’ eggs, among many other surprising foods.”  And that is really hard, because “sometimes when my family is not eating pasta, bread or processed grains like white rice, we’re left with that specific hunger that comes with avoiding carbs.”  So much intolerance, of so many foods, in your entire family?  How convenient.  Now you will not be tempted to prepare any normal food for them, and risk dropping it into your starving mouth.  Gluten intolerance for the whole family, just in time for those photographs in your bikini.  That is a really bad idea for children, on many levels, the least of which is that your food issue will become their food issue, manifested in a way you cannot predict or control.  Do you need Child Only Medical Insurance, get a low cost quote?

Bad Idea # 3 – Avoiding workouts that make you feel “fat” or “bulky”

There is no such thing as a bad muscle.  Period.  The notion presented in this goop newsletter  that certain exercises are “bad” or build too much muscle just further demonstrates that celebrity Gwyneth Paltrow prefers the anorexic, grisly look.  And maybe that does photograph better.   That is a question that should be left in celebrity circles.  For the rest of the world, muscle mass is great and always aides to better health and a fine appearance.  So never worry if your muscles are the right shape and size, just concentrate on exercises that you enjoy and can stick with.

Bad Idea #4 – Continuing avoidance of meat if you are anemic

We learn at least one part of Gwyneth’s hypochondria was legitimate, and that was a diagnosis of anemia and vitamin D deficiency.  Many women of child bearing age struggle with this vitamin deficiency and with anemia, iron poor blood.  For those women, it is not advisable to adhere to a vegetarian diet, because the iron derived from plants and grains is not absorbed into our bodies as easily as the iron in meat.  People that have issues with the way meat is farmed and processed can look for farmers that produce sustainable meat products from animals that have lived a healthy life.  Gwyneth Paltrow certainly has the resources to seek out such meat.

Good Idea #1 – Not eating processed foods

Processed foods, those manufactured in industrial processes for sale on a mass market, are terrible for your body, for many reasons, arguably the most significant being the additives and preservatives used to prolong the shelf life of processed foods.   Food is supposed to spoil relatively quickly, that is what aides our digestion of it.  But, it is easy to get lazy and buy the pre-grated cheese, the packaged pizza, or box of chocolate chip cookies.  Gwyneth’s enthusiasm for making food yourself is infectious, and that is a good thing, because everyone should be reminded and encouraged to eliminate processed foods from their diet as much as possible.

Good Idea #2 – Cooking with your children

Gwyneth’s first cookbook is all about learning to cook with her father.  They learned together and in the book she talks about teaching her children.  It is very inspirational and a very important message.  People that know how to cook are several steps closer to eating healthy and being healthy.  People who do not know how to cook, tend to rely on restaurants and premade, processed foods, and they have no control over the ingredients.  So cook with your kids:  teach them how to cook and how to clean up confidently.  It is an invaluable life skill.  Don’t know how to cook?  Take inspiration from Gwyneth’s Father, and learn alongside your child.  Click here for quick recipes on a budget.

Good Idea #3 – Avoiding perfectionism

In one of her issues of goop, Gwyneth gives us a peak at her personal struggle with perfection.  It is very insightful and a nudge to all of us to examine our motives and whether or not the victories we think are achieved when we strive for perfection are pyrrhic at best.

Good Idea #4 – All of her recipes

All of her food is good.  Even the latest cookbook, which feels like it was born out of neurosis, has some delicious and truly creative recipes.  Some of her best:  scallion-mint pesto, fried rice and kale, polenta with corn and chives, antipasti snapper in paper (easily substitute chicken for the snapper), chickpea salsa, roasted tomato and anchovy oreganata, maple-dijon roasted winter vegetables, and turkey sausage patties.  They are all easy to find on her website or in the cookbooks.


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