Earlier this week, the New York Times ran a fascinating feature about Gwyneth Paltrow and Goop. In it, we learn—surprise! surprise!—that Gwyneth Paltrow does not like fact-checking. We also learn that the criticism of Goop's selling of pseudoscience and quackery has reached the point where Paltrow has given in and plans to hire a fact checker. Unfortunately, I strongly suspect that it will do no good and that skeptics will have as much work to do refuting Goop's quackery after the fact-checker is hired as we do now.
Meet Dr. Jason Fung. Dr. Fung is unhappy with skeptics and thinks they're hypocrites behaving like religious fanatics. Unfortunately for him, his arguments are a combination of the worst methodolatry of evidence-based medicine combined with rants against conventional medicine and a defense of quackery.
Bee venom acupuncture is a form of apitherapy (treatment with bee products, such as venom, honey, or pollen) in which bee venom is injected along acupuncture points, often by actual bees. It also recently resulted in the death of a woman from anaphylactic shock. Basically, the use of bee venom acupuncture cannot be justified because it has no proven benefits and is potentially deadly.
Science advocate and Goop critic Dr. Jen Gunter managed to infiltrate Gwyneth Paltrow's quackfest In Goop Health by hiding in plain sight. (Actually, she just bought a ticket and attended.) What she found was a wretched hive of scum and quackery, plus a psychic who claims that death is not real. In addition to the nonsense, there was a dark side, as well,with quacks promoting the idea that you can cure cancer with thought alone and don't need medication to treat depression.
Almost alone among celebrities, Stephen Colbert used to ruthlessly (and justifiably) mock Gwyneth Paltrow's lifestyle brand Goop on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. So eyebrows were raised (at least mine were) when it was learned that Paltrow would be a guest on The Late Show. During a bout of insomnia last night I saw the episode and had time to write about it. Her appearance was worse than I expected, a veritable puff piece promoting her her quackiest In Goop Health, where a featured speaker is a rabidly antivaccine doctor named Kelly Brogan.
Last week, while discussing the antivaccine stylings of "holistic psychiatrist" Dr. Kelly Brogan, I promised to revisit her e-book "Vaccines and Brain Health." Never let it be said that Orac doesn't keep his promises.
Earlier this year, Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop held a quackfest in New York City. Well, the second in Goop Health quackfest is coming in January, and Goop is doubling down on the quackery by featuring Dr. Kelly Brogan, HIV/AIDS denialist and antivaccine and anti-psychiatry quack.
Gwyneth Paltrow's goop is continuing to sell snake oil promoted as the "empowerment" of women. Yes, that even includes a psychic vampire repellent, reiki charged.
Dr. Aviva Romm, one of Goop's doctors, tried to distance herself from Goop's pseudoscience. It didn't go well.
The ubiquity of quackery and pseudoscience of the sort epitomized by Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop empire can be depressing if you're a skeptic. Sometimes it feels as though it's not worth refuting the nonsense she peddles. But it is. Just maybe not in the way you think.