Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop Blasted for Promoting ‘Extremely Damaging’ Weight Loss Advice

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - APRIL 05: Actress Gwyneth Paltrow signs her new book 'It's All Good: Delicious, Easy Recipes That Will Make You Look Good and Feel Great' at Williams-Sonoma on April 5, 2013 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
Jason Merritt/Getty Images

Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop has come under fire once more for its supposed health tips, after a nutritionist slammed the lifestyle brand’s latest article promoting weight loss advice as potentially “extremely damaging” to readers’ long-term health.

In its latest entry under “Wellness,” celebrity fitness expert Tracy Anderson tells readers that if they have significant excess weight to lose, they could achieve a 14-pound weight loss in just four weeks.

“You will experience short-term stress (particularly during your cycle if you’re a woman)—but this can end up being less stressful than living with the stress of excess weight,” Anderson — who reportedly counts Lena Dunham, Kim Kardashian, and Madonna as fans — wrote in the article’s Q&A.

The article also advises readers to ramp up workouts to at least once per day, cut down on gluten and go “low carb,” and features a menu of possible healthy options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

But at least one nutritionist has taken aim at Anderson over the article.

Rhiannon Lambert told the Independent that taken together, Anderson’s advice could potentially be harmful for those trying to lose weight and maintain a healthy figure in the long-term.

“I am in complete shock that this article has been published as this has the potential to harm a lot of relationships with food,” Lambert told the outlet.

The nutritionist explained that both switching to a low-carb diet and going gluten-free at the same time is “utterly scientifically incorrect” approach to successful weight loss.

“Numerous research has demonstrated that every diet, be it low carb, high carb, low fat or high fat will only work owed to overall energy reduction, not because of the food group itself,” she explained to the Independent.

Lambert also said that switching to a workout routine every day could actually harm weight loss efforts, because the body is not given enough time to recover and the toll the increased workouts take on the body may lead to increased  physical stress. The nutritionist also took aim at Anderson’s line of protein bars, which she said contained unhealthy ingredients, and at her suggestions for healthy meal options, some of which suggest weight-watchers to drink tea with her own brand of protein powder.

“Quick fixes never last,” Lambert told the outlet. “They are just that: quick and not sustainable. In fact, they may end up affecting how you manage your weight long term.”

Lambert’s takedown of Anderson’s Goop column comes as the women’s lifestyle brand — initially begun as a newsletter by Paltrow in 2008 — has faced increasing criticism about its marketing practices and the usefulness of its advice columns.

In August, marketing watchdog Truth in Advertising slammed Goop for what it called its “terribly deceptive” marketing practices, which it claimed “exploit” women for profit. The watchdog provided a list of more than 50 products it said Goop had been marketing using dubious or inconclusive health claims. And in October, UK magazine The Skeptic “awarded” Goop its inaugural Rusty Razor prize for promoting “pseudoscience,” with the magazine claiming the company’s products do not work as advertised.

The company has also come under fire for its annual holiday gift guide, which often features exorbitantly expensive items priced far out of reach of the ordinary women to whom Paltrow claims to be marketing her products. This year’s edition features a $16,500 at-home float tank and a nearly $8,000 hand-carved canoe.

Paltrow fired back at her critics in a podcast interview in August, telling Girlboss Radio‘s Sophia Amoruso that the company “stands behind” everything it promotes.


Follow Daniel Nussbaum on Twitter: @dznussbaum


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