Health

Gwyneth Paltrow's Latest Health Advice is Causing Controversy

March 10th 2017

By:
Kyle Fitzpatrick

Gwyneth Paltrow and her lifestyle brand Goop love to share advice on how to live your best, healthiest life.

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing. But it’s complicated, because Paltrow is not a credible source for health information. A source for entertainment and culture? Sure. But medical advice? No.

This is why Women’s Health is facing some push-back over an interview with Paltrow featured in this month's magazine..

In the interview, she espouses alternative health practices that aren’t quite medically sound. For example, her view on supplements

“I think women in modern society don't feel very well,” she tells the magazine. “I've always experimented with supplements. And I believe the combination of toxic load, the modern environment, and nutritional deficiency makes our bodies more vulnerable to breaking down.”

(Paltrow explained that she worked in conjunction with Dr. Alejandro Junger, who is known for his controversial cleanse diet.)

This information may seem banal enough but there have been many studies disproving the validity of supplements. As USA Today reported in 2013, doctors at Johns Hopkins University have stated that supplements have not been proven to be effective and in some situations are discouraged from use.

From USA Today:

"'The message is simple: Most supplements do not prevent chronic disease or death, their use is not justified, and they should be avoided,' says the editorial, signed by two researchers from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, one British researcher and one of the journal's senior editors. After years of study and mostly disappointing results, the editorial says, 'enough is enough.'"

A lot of people aren’t happy about the Women's Health interview.

On the surface, Paltrow is just trying to share what works for her. The problem is that doctors repeatedly disagree.

“It is disappointing that a magazine called 'Women’s Health’ is embracing this science-free nonsense!” Tim Caulfield, Professor of Health Law and Science Policy at University of Alberta, told Gizmodo.

Some doctors are zooming in on specific items mentioned in the Women’s Health story, like her goat-milk-only cleanse to prove why they are wrong. “You would probably have more flatulence,” Dr. Kyle Staller of Massachusetts General Hospital told STAT. “The idea it’s going to cleanse you from parasites is fraught with problems.”

This isn’t Gwyneth’s first fake science rodeo, either.

In January, Paltrow advised a potentially harmful gynecological practice back that consisted of inserting a jade egg into one’s vagina.

As ATTN: reported at the time, doctors have reported the act could cause bacterial infections and lead to dire consequences like Toxic Shock Syndrome.

Gwyneth Paltrow does acknowledge that this is what works for her, specifically, and some people won't like her advice.

“When someone doesn't like something you do, or doesn't share your interest in something, that doesn't have anything to do with you,” she told Women's Health.

“It's a blessing to be liberated from the chains of other people's perceptions of you," she continued. "It's part of wellness, working at that.”

That may be her most sound health advice to date.