Gwyneth Paltrow is on the cover of Women’s Health, a magazine I shall now refer to as Woman’s Woo or Woman’s Unhealth, and of course the accompanying article contains a lot of Ms. Paltrow’s ridiculous and potentially harmful health claims. Paltrow, however, is not bothered what anyone who might actually know about medicine thinks because if she “thinks” it works well obviously biology and physiology are clearly irrelevant. She has been liberated from medicine. Why should anyone go to medical school if the enlightenment Paltrow apparently possess is available without any higher education?

Calling Paltrow a beauty-wellness-lifestyle guru is really an offense to two of those three words. She and the team that prep her probably know a lot about hair and make up. However, the medical information on GOOP is either drivel or harmful. Her advice on iodine could kill someone. Everyone is not suffering from chronic yeast infections that only some private doctor’s diet can cure. Using vaginal jade eggs could injure your pelvic floor. Bras will not give you breast cancer. If this is what Women’s Health is okay calling wellness then they are either a simpering pandering pile of trash trying to cash in on the Paltrow crazy train or they really believe there are toxins everywhere. I get they have to promote their celebrities, but if your brand is health you should have an idea that what Paltrow is selling is woo.

Letting Paltrow and her PR team brand jade eggs as a wellness trend instead of snake oil is wrong. Medical care isn’t supposed to be trendy, it should be safe and effective. For example, a woman could injure her pelvic floor using a jade egg the way GOOP recommended. Hope Paltrow’s sex life and her lactobacilli are okay because Paltrow “insisted on trying one.”

What bothers me about the jade eggs and apparently makes Paltrow laugh is the fact that she duped thousands of women into buying them. I see her 4,000 women waiting list as tragic. I’ve seen some of those women who sent Paltrow money in real life and you know what, they are angry and upset they paid $60 for something they could not help them and could possibly hurt them.

Not content with bilking women out of hard-earned money for jade eggs she is going into the supplement trade. A woman only buys one jade egg, but she will keep coming back month after month for supplements. I guess the GOOP test kitchen recipes must be a major fail because food is supposed to be nutritionally complete. So much for her lifestyle claims. If you are eating healthy and do not have a medical condition you do not need supplements.

As for the complaints Paltrow hears from women, “Why am I so effing tired?” How does she hear this? Does she have a doctor’s office or is this what she hears at the vaginal steaming spa? If Paltrow is so “effing tired” I would point out that her fatigue could possibly be a side effect of an 8 day Goat’s milk cleanses and as testimony to the fact that she follows health advice from a man who speaks with ghosts. Almost every piece of medical advice on her site is garbage. If she is doing all of that of course she’s doesn’t feel right. If she is so tired and doesn’t have a medical condition then her lifestyle sucks.

I’m a doctor and I work full-time. I write a lot, so really I have one and a half jobs. I am the parent of 13-year-old twins. I bake all my own bread and make all my food from scratch (except pasta). I even have old mercury filling in my teeth. You know when I’m tired? When I am sick (like my recent pneumonia, very tired) and when I don’t get enough sleep and when I am very stressed. Maybe Gwyneth should have a respite chez Gunter and I can show her what clean, healthy living really is. She would learn that a working pantry is not a sterile looking Bahaus meets mason jar show piece, it’s got half-open boxes and rogue pasta. Maybe I need a lifestyle site!

When people are exhausted they could have a medical condition (anemia, hypothyroidism, depression to name a few) or it could be lack of sleep or lack of exercise. Fatigue means you should see a doctor, not take a supplement. Your doctor should take a history and then screen for medical conditions as appropriate. However, what Paltrow and her ilk are hoping is that people who feel tired because of stress or being over worked will spend their money on her tripe. She is banking on people with depression and fibromyalgia looking for some other unifying diagnosis to further her $wellness venture. Fatigue is the ultimate snake oil diagnosis. It even drove men to get goat testicle implants (yes, many were maimed and some died). Fatigue is a gift that keeps on giving to charlatans.

Apparently Paltrow is now interested in heavy metals and I don’t think she means helping people in Flint, Michigan. Again, this is snake oil territory. Look out for GOOP supplements designed to cleanse you of heavy metals and a think piece from a private clinic that will test you for heavy metal poisoning and offer chelation…for a price. There could be a book on how to do home chelation too. Maybe the expert will also consult ghosts.

When an expert like me dismisses Paltrow’s vaginal streaming as biologically implausible and potentially harmful I’m not being “reactive.” That’s an insult. I am using biology and science and I don’t want women to get hurt or waste their time and money. You know what makes me tired? Wasting time and money.

Allowing GOOP to brand themselves as wellness in a magazine that purports to be about health for women is wrong. If Gwyneth Paltrow is so “effing” tired all the time, science aside, that seems like a pretty dismal recommendation for her health and wellness advice and lifestyle advice.


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  1. Thanks for your blog Jen! I wish there were a lifestyle site for professional parents who believe in peer review. Any chance that you’d start one?

  2. First time reading your posts Dr. Gunter – a real and licensed health expert unlike the fake lifestyle snake-oil saleswoman!
    I wonder about these women who believe anything coming out of GOOP’s mouth?! These gullible individuals are either insufferable themselves and/or are suckers enough as though not realizing making Paltrow even more wealthy.
    I agree that much of what she claims to be healthy is not only myth but outright dangerous. One can only hope that she never causes the death of someone who buys and uses her shameful peddled ghost approved products and advice.
    On the other hand Paltrow has yet to find a solution to her bad and reeking body odor that gives some really bad whiffs that linger long after she leaves. Ask those around her when she attends the Met gala for example who really turn around and promptly vacate the immediate area after the slightest breeze makes one nauseous. Hmmm…what say you Paltrow?

  3. Best description: “a working pantry is not a sterile looking Bahaus meets mason jar show piece, it’s got half-open boxes and rogue pasta.” Nodding my head in agreement, totally describes mine!

    1. “Rogue pasta” is making me laugh, too! Granted, I have a toddler and a baby who’s learning to eat ALL-BY-HERSELF-THANK-YOU-VERY-MUCH!!, so rogue pasta may or may not be cooked here.

  4. You’re so on to something here…a women’s health site/magazine based on (gasp) science and actual medicine. I’d read that. Sigh. Women’s mags are so full of depressingly blatant crap.

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