Gwyneth Paltrow’s new Netflix show The Goop Lab might be a wondrous showcase of good lighting and people who know their signature color, but at least one person is not a fan: UK Health Chief Simon Stevens. At an event in Oxford on Thursday, Stevens slammed The Goop Lab for spreading “misinformation” and carrying “considerable risks to health.”
Paltrow’s Netflix series, like the lifestyle brand for which it is named, has a penchant for elevating junk science. According to the BBC, Stevens complained Thursday about the show’s choice to elevate “dubious wellness products and dodgy procedures.”
“Goop has just popped up with a new TV series, in which Gwyneth Paltrow and her team test vampire facials and back a body worker, who claims to cure both acute psychological trauma and side-effects by simply moving his hands two inches above a customer's body,” Stevens said, per the BBC. A representative for Netflix declined to comment when reached by The Daily Beast.
And although the term “fake news” is often applied to politics, Stevens said, “people's natural concern for their health—and particularly about that of their loved ones—makes this particularly fertile ground for quacks, charlatans and cranks.” Technology, he noted, has only magnified that problem.
In 2018, a profile of Paltrow in The New York Times Magazine revealed that Goop had ended a magazine collaboration with Condé Nast over fact checking. “G.P. didn’t understand the problem,” Taffy Brodesser-Akner wrote. “‘We’re never making statements,’ she said. Meaning, they’re never asserting anything like a fact. They’re just asking unconventional sources some interesting questions.”
Representatives for Goop told The Daily Beast that the brand is “transparent when we cover emerging topics that may be unsupported by science or may be in early stages of review,” adding that the company “takes efficacy and product claims very seriously.” They also noted that the organization’s legal and compliance team works directly with its science and research group to vet product claims.