Did I ever tell you about the time that I interviewed Iron Man 3’s Gwyneth Paltrow and she totally signed her It’s All Good cookbook for me?
It was pretty amazing!
A little about Gwyneth Paltrow’s Cookbook It’s All Good (courtesy of Amazon.com):
Last spring, after a particularly grueling schedule and lapse of overindulgence, Gwyneth Paltrow was feeling fatigued and faint. A visit to her doctor revealed that she was anemic, vitamin D deficient, and that her stress levels were sky high. He prescribed an elimination diet to clear out her system and help her body heal. An avid foodie, Paltrow was concerned that so many restrictions would make mealtime boring, so, together with Julia Turshen, she compiled a collection of 185 delicious, easy recipes that followed her doctor’s guidelines. Now, in IT’S ALL GOOD, she shares the go-to dishes that have become the baseline for the restorative diet she turns to whenever she feels she needs it. Recipes include: Huevos Rancheros, Hummus Tartine with Scallion-Mint Pesto, Salmon Burgers with Pickled Ginger, even Power Brownies, Banana “Ice Cream,” and more!
Not only did we get to ask Gwyneth Paltrow all kinds of questions about her role of Pepper Potts in Iron Man 3, but she also answered a ton of our questions about her new cookbook, It’s All Good.
I mean, have you seen Iron Man 3? Gwyneth’s physique is to die for – so much so that when it was time to don the Iron Man suit, she simply wore Robert Downey Jr’s suit!
Q: How did you get into doing cookbooks?
GP : I started writing down my recipes because I was always a cook and a foodie, and my friends would call me. There’s Julia, my best friend since seventh grade – she called me once and she said, “I have a guy coming over; I have no idea what to make- I have to make dinner.” I had a lot of friends kind of asking me how do you do that, or like all my friends would be, like, what temperature do I roast this at? You know, what’s an easy dinner, or I have a dinner party…so I started writing them all down.
Then when my dad died, I don’t know, I just thought it would be- because he was the one taught me cook, and like we learned together and our connection to food was such a part of our relationship, and so I thought it would be really nice because I sort of felt him in the kitchen. I sort of felt it would be nice to write the recipes and you know, kind of pay homage to him and our relationship at the same time, and it was cathartic. You know, I really felt him there.
This book I did basically because my son has really bad eczema, so I did his food allergy tests and he’s really allergic to gluten and cow’s milk. And I felt so bad for him, not having regular ice cream and meat balls and stuff. So I just started- it’s like, I’m gonna just make him, basically a, like a mini-encyclopedia of totally yummy comfort food that’s just on his diet.
It’s been incredible because so many people are trying to avoid gluten either for weight or they’re allergic to it, so yeah, that’s sort of how it all happened.
Q: Is that why there’s duck egg reference?
GP : Yes, because he can’t have chicken egg. I’m actually allergic to chicken egg, as well, so there’s some duck egg in it, but I also do regular eggs, but there’s just to give people the idea, if you are. But that that’s why the whole baking, the whole sweet section has no egg, no milk, no butter, no, no gluten, just to give alternatives for moms who are trying to follow that kind of regiment.
This makes me so happy because I have known three people in my life that were deathly allergic to eggs. So allergic that they couldn’t have cake, any baked goods containing eggs – I never knew that there was an alternative to cooking with chicken’s eggs and once I got home, I shot a friend an email asking her if she’s ever thought about using duck’s eggs. Needless to say, she planned on contacting her allergist!
Q: Can you talk about issues that led you to the doctor?
GP : Basically, what happened was, two years ago, I had this really insane period where I had this movie, Country Strong coming out; I was filming Glee, and I was having to sing, live. It was really hard on me.
And then, of course, because I’m a mom, I would never be like, you know what? Let me get to L.A. one day early so I can actually sleep and, take a walk, and you know, it’s like, no, I have to get their the day of and I’ll just shower and do it, and I’ll go home right away. So I was just steadily wearing myself down and I think there was some emotional stuff, too, and I just had this weird episode where I was making lunch, and the right side of my body went numb, and it was so terrifying, I thought I was having a stroke.
And then because I thought I was having a stroke, I started having an anxiety attack on top of what was this migraine that was making my whole right side numb, and I really freaked out. And I went to bed; I took a nap, and I remember hearing my kids playing in the garden, and (thinking) I can’t believe I’m here. I can’t go down and play with them; what’s happening? So I went to the doctor and I was really super freaked out, and I got tested for everything.
And it was basically like I had run myself into the ground; I had really, really high stress hormones- they were killing my adrenals. I had really low vitamin D, vitamin B; my estrogen was messed up, everything was just off, and they said I had a cyst on my parathyroid, I had a cyst on my ovary- like, they found a million things wrong. And my doctor here said, I want you to- because the other doctors were like, go on this medication; get a surgery; and he said to me, just for three weeks, eat an elimination diet. Just eat super clean, just how your ancestors would’ve eaten like chicken, fig, vegetables.
You know, no coffee, no alcohol, no sugar and in three weeks, my blood work had changed so much and my parathyroid nodule went away over time which is amazing. I did have to get my cyst out with surgery, but other than that I fixed everything with the food. And I was like, this is incredible. Food really is, you know, medicine. It’s amazing. I mean, it’s only because I did it to myself, you know what I mean? And then I undid it.
I 100% get this. Having suffered from migraines my entire adult life, it was only after I went on a strict diet that cut out processed foods, artificial ingredients and sugars that my migraines went away.
As soon as I went off the diet and began reintroducing processed foods that I began to struggle with daily headaches again. Food is so much more than fuel – it can completely change the way our bodies run!
One of my best friends is currently trying to ready herself for getting pregnant and she’s gone on an all-natural diet: no processed foods, as much organic produce, meat and diary as possible, no alcohol – why? Because she doesn’t want chemicals interfering with the process. She’s also a marathon runner, and immediately began to see a difference when she cut the processed foods out of her diet!
Q: What advice do you have regarding the best nutrition?
GP : A nutritionist once told me the way that we’ve changed our diet in the last fifty years is crazy. Like, if you showed our grandmothers, our great grandmothers what- the way we were eating, they’d be like, this isn’t even food. What are you doing?
We’ve just gotten, because of the convenience of it, of course, we’ve gotten use to it. And I’m the same. I buy turkey jerky and horrible things that I shouldn’t buy, too, but the nutritionist said to me, “When you’re at the supermarket, shop the periphery.”
That’s where all the fresh food is; that’s where the chicken, fish, beef, everything fresh is on the periphery. Just avoid those center aisles, and it really makes sense because that’s where all the processed food is. My philosophy is always like, I try to cook really healthy at home because I can’t control what they eat at home or at friend’s houses. Nor do I want to. I want them to be autonomous and have- make their own choices and have a life. I think that that’s their balance; and my balance is, I try to cook healthy at home, and then out, I’ll eat whatever I want to.
But in terms of you know, telling your readers, we’ve always eaten that way, and we have all of a sudden skyrocketing obesity, type II diabetes, heart disease – there’s a reason it’s happening. It’s never happened until we started- like, you can literally see when plastic came and when it all changed, like when, you know what I mean?
Q: How do you keep your kids healthy when you’re away from home?
GP: We were just in Paris; I was on the Iron Man press tour. I mean, try eating gluten free in Paris. It is a nightmare. My poor child. So you know what I try to do? I mean, he totally ate a croissant; he ate bread, and it was inevitable. But you know what, one day I was like, let’s go find Japanese food. Asian foods are amazing for avoiding a lot of that stuff.
If we’re traveling or we’re out, I try to say, like- or even Mexican food, like, you know, the corn tortillas and guacamole, they don’t think oh, I’m not allowed to have that. It’s chips and guacamole. It’s awesome and it doesn’t feel like health food, but I’m avoiding what he’s not supposed to have. So I just try to get a little bit more creative about it. But, you know, when I go back home – this weekend he’s having his belated birthday party, and his cake is a regular cake with flour.
So I just try for the most part, because his symptoms are so bad, and I feel like, when I’m, like, oh, it’s fine, you know, and then he breaks out, I feel terrible. You know, and in the moment, you wanna give them what they want, but then there’s this incredible consequence to it that’s kind of a bummer. So Asian foods, Mexican, those are all really what a great way to avoid it when you’re out.
Q: When you cook, do you rap?
GP: Do you have a hidden camera in my kitchen? That is so crazy. How do you know that? Yes, we are a hip hop household, a hundred percent. My son, especially, he said the best thing the other day because he’s loves hip hop. He’s obsessed and you know, Jay-Z’s a really close friend of ours and that was his sort of gateway into hip hop. And now he’s branched out and the other day he was, like, Mom, I think that Jay is story rapper and Kid Cudi is a feelings rapper.
And I was like, you’re totally right. This is so weird. Yeah, so yeah, the answer is yes.
After our Q & A session was over, Gwyneth Paltrow posed with a photo for us – which was just as exciting as our interview session. Big thanks to Crissy Page at DearCrissy.com for providing these amazing photos of Gwyneth Paltrow for us!
If you haven’t picked up a copy yet, you can buy Gywneth Paltrow’s new cookbook, It’s All Good, on Amazon.com!
Thanks again to Disney, Marvel and Gwyneth Paltrow for the copy of her awesome cookbook – watch out later this month as I begin to recreate her recipes for my own family!
I was able to interview Gwyneth Paltrow while in Los Angeles at the #IronMan3Event. While my travel, accommodations and activities were paid for by Disney and Marvel Studios, all opinions are my own.