Gwyneth Paltrow says her dad's cancer diagnosis was the catalyst for her embracing a healthy lifestyle.

The 'Iron Man 3' actress admits her obsession with whole foods and natural products began when she was trying to help her late father Bruce Paltrow - who passed away in October 2002 - beat his throat cancer by researching alkaline diets.

She told the debut issue of Beach magazine: 'I began to consider the effects of food when my father was diagnosed with throat cancer in 1998. I started to research anti-cancer diets in hopes that he would try to hit it from all angles.'

The 40-year-old star believes avoiding processed food and sticking to organic produce can have a massive impact on your everyday health and state of mind.

She explained: 'It's about being mindful about what you are putting in. Good whole foods are the way we have eaten for generations. It's amazing how good you feel when you just cut out the processed stuff.'

Gwyneth has come under fire for her super strict lifestyle in the past, with critics calling her a 'bad mom' after she revealed her daughter Apple, eight, and son Moses, seven - who she has with her Coldplay frontman husband Chris Martin - have gluten and dairy free diets.

She insists her kids only follow her special diet plan because Moses suffers from bad eczema and is allergic to gluten and cow dairy.