Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop reported to British regulators over 'potentially dangerous claims’

The wellness brand has been reported to the National Trading Standards and the Advertising Standards Authority 

Sarah Young
Monday 29 October 2018 09:38 GMT
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A decade after launching her much mocked brand, the actor-turned-wellness guru has turned it into an empire
A decade after launching her much mocked brand, the actor-turned-wellness guru has turned it into an empire

Controversial lifestyle brand Goop, created by actor Gwyneth Paltrow, has been reported to UK advertising regulators over “misleading and potentially dangerous claims”.

Good Thinking Society, a charity that promotes scientific thinking, reported the organisation to the National Trading Standards and the Advertising Standards Authority last week alleging that is has breached more than 113 UK advertising laws.

In documents seen by The Sunday Times, the charity highlights a number of Goop products that experts warn could endanger the public, including sun protection products costing up to £45 each and The Goop Medicine Bag, a selection of “health-giving” stones costing £76 each.

Another one of the products under scrutiny is a “top-of-the-line natal protocol” for women who are pregnant or planning to get pregnant that costs £88.

Called The Mother Load, the product claims to contain 110 per cent of the recommended “daily value” of vitamin A for adults.

However, both the NHS and the World Health Organisation have stated that pregnant women should avoid taking supplements containing vitamin A because of the potential risks.

The NHS advises that pregnant women “do not take vitamin A supplements, or any supplements containing vitamin A, as too much could harm your baby.”

Laura Thomason, project manager at Good Thinking Society tells The Independent: “It is shocking to see the sheer volume of unproven claims made by Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop about their products, especially given that some of their health advice is potentially dangerous: nobody should be advising customers to avoid using conventional sunscreen or that pregnant women should take vitamin A, something that health experts have warned can be harmful to unborn children.

“Gwyneth Paltrow may well have good intentions, but she and her company sell products with claims that could clearly mislead customers. Just because Gwyneth has an Academy Award, it does not mean that Goop should be given an easy ride compared to other big corporations."

She continues: “Being a celebrity does not exempt someone from abiding by the advertising law here in the UK, and if Gwyneth Paltrow cannot provide satisfactory evidence behind the claims she makes for her products, she should not be making those claims”.

The accusations come a month after Goop was ordered to pay $145,000 (£112,514) after making unscientific claims about the health benefits of vaginal eggs.

On the Goop website, it states that using jade vaginal eggs can provide women with a “spiritual detox” by removing negative energy when used on a daily basis.

However, a group of district attorneys from California filed a lawsuit against the company, which states that the assertions made on the site are unfounded.

The statement released by the office of the district attorney in the Californian county of Santa Clara states that the medical claims made about the vaginal eggs are “not supported by competent and reliable science.”

Despite the controversy surrounding the brand, Paltrow denies that its claims are based on “pseudoscience.”

The actress and CEO of the controversial brand rejected the claim in an interview with the BBC, in which she defended her company and said: “We disagree with that wholeheartedly.”

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She explained: “We really believe that there are healing modalities that have existed thousands of years, and they challenge maybe a very conventional western doctor that might not believe necessarily in the healing powers of essential oils or any variety of acupuncture, things that have been tried and tested for hundreds of years.

“We find that they are very helpful to people and there is an incredible power in the human body to heal itself.”

Goop has been contacted by The Independent for comment.

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