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Gwyneth Paltrow: I Let My Kids Eat Things Other Than Pencil Shavings and Baked Kale

506px-GwynethPaltrowByAndreaRaffin2011After taking heat for her somewhat painfully restrictive new cookbook, It’s All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great – which the New York Post dubbed “the manifesto to some sort of creepy healthy-girl sorority with members who use beet juice rather than permanent marker to circle the ‘problem areas’ on each other’s bodies” — Gwyneth Paltrow has taken to her website/newsletter/whateveritis GOOP to proclaim that she is NOT a Food Nazi with her kids. JUST SO YOU KNOW.

In fact, far from being controlling and obsessive about what her kids put into their bodies, she’s gracious enough to let them scarf Cheetos and one (1) Coke a week! SO LAY OFF ALREADY. JEEZ.

Of her children’s nutrition, Paltrow says:

I tried to start them off with all of the right foods but as they got older, the lure of Oreos and cotton candy outweighed the lure of carrots with hummus. And that’s all a part of childhood and I love Oreos too, so I completely understand. I try to make sure that what is on their plate at home is nutritious and tasty and then I loosen way up on the reigns when we are out. They love a brown rice stir-fry but they also love their ‘Coke of the week’. My daughter gravitates toward fresh fruit and raw nuts but will inhale a bag of hot Cheetos at the airport. It’s all about balance.

Which actually sounds… sane? I mean, isn’t this what we all try to do to some extent or other as parents – steer our kids away from junk and toward healthy food choices? I have a difficult time taking issue with that. And while allowing only one Coke a week and just an occasional snack bag of Cheetos (or whatever) seems leaning a wee bit more toward draconian than balanced (particularly when viewed from the perspective the average middle class American’s diet), trying to get your kids to eat better isn’t being “mean.” It’s looking out for their health and long-term well-being. Which is kind of the job description of Parent, right?

And though I’m sure plenty of people will continue to take issue with Paltrow’s overall concept of nutrition, excluding as it does meat, dairy, gluten and sugar — ie, the most beloved staples of the American diet — I for one am over the generalized, knee-jerk Paltrow hating. And for the record, I can’t stand GOOP. (I in fact have a theory that GOOP was the tipping point for her in terms of The Haters. She launched a ridiculously privileged luxury lifestyle e-pub right smack in the middle of the worst economy since the Great Depression, when most of us were struggling to keep jobs and make rent. It came off as very Let Them Eat Cake… while we fly off to St Barts for the weekend WHEE! Bad timing, Gwennie.) But I can’t hate on a mom for wanting to do what they believe is right for the health of their children, however extreme it might seem to me. And overall, it seems stupid to hate someone for simply being who they are and living the life they have, however ridiculously privileged. As Paltrow has said herself in the past, “I am who I am. I can’t pretend to be somebody who makes $25,000 a year.” And maybe that’s okay?

What about you? Are you Team Gwyneth or Team Gwyneth Haters? (CHOOSE AND BE DESTROYED!)

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