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Gwyneth Paltrow's Latest Strict 'Wellness' Advice Proves It's Time To Follow A New Queen Of Self-Care—Ina Garten

Photo: lev radin, Kathy Hutchins  / Shutterstock
Gwyneth Paltrow, Ina Garten

Since Gwyneth Paltrow launched her lifestyle brand Goop in 2008, she has gone from movie star to so-called “wellness” guru spouting advice that can be dubious at best.

She's become a champion for vagina steamingvagina-scented candles and some questionable dietary habits. From nutrition to alternative medicine to whatever vaginal jade eggs are (she really has a thing for her vagina, doesn’t she…), Paltrow hawks all kinds of products and advice that are, aside from everything else, financially out of reach for nearly everyone but the 1%.

But her recent viral appearance on wellness podcast “The Art of Being Well With Dr. Will Cole” takes things to a whole new level that some experts worry is not even safe.

And as a comedian pointed out on Twitter, it’s also probably not even worth the trouble. Her thoughtful thread proposes we redefine what “wellness” even means, and suggests we replace Paltrow with a most unlikely figure.

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Gwyneth Paltrow's reign as queen of wellness might be over — and Ina Garten should take her throne instead.

Comedian Rohita Kadambi says we should all be following “Barefoot Contessa” host Ina Garten’s lifestyle instead of Gwyneth Paltrow's Goop "wellness" routine."

Kadambi made her case with a viral Twitter thread comparing the stark differences—and seemingly equally stark outcomes—between chef and author Garten’s lifestyle and Paltrow’s.

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Paltrow told “The Art of Being Well” podcaster Will Cole her “wellness routine” includes intravenous nutrients and very little food.

Paltrow’s protocol for supposed good health includes "dry-brushing" her skin, infrared saunas, and an extremely restrictive diet.

The 50-year-old mother-of-two practices intermittent fasting, a method of limiting eating to an abbreviated window of time each day. It has been found to be a potentially effective way of managing blood sugar, particularly for those suffering from insulin-related conditions like metabolic syndrome and Type 2 diabetes. But Paltrow pairs the method with a punishingly scant diet.



"I usually eat something about 12 [noon]," Paltrow told Cole, "and in the morning, I'll have something that won't spike my blood sugar…so I have coffee." Paltrow follows this with "bone broth for lunch," and an early dinner that follows the Paleo diet. 

That’s it. One meal per day and a cup of broth—and perhaps that’s fine for Paltrow. Perhaps she’s under a doctor’s supervision and all is well. But she presents this lifestyle as a paragon of virtue—something we should all be doing for optimal wellness if we truly want to achieve our best selves like Paltrow supposedly has.

But eating one meal a day and a cup of broth is a recipe, so to speak, for disaster for many people on several different levels from possibly triggering eating disorders to simple malnourishment. It should go without saying that promoting this as "wellness" fit for any and everyone is incredibly dangerous.

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In a TikTok duet, dietitian Lauren Cadillac called Paltrow’s wellness routine disordered eating.

Cadillac’s frustration with Paltrow’s health claims is palpable in her video. 



"Bone broth is not a meal," Cadillac says in onscreen text in response to Paltrow’s eating plan. In her caption, Cadillac put a finer point on it. "This isn’t wellness, this is DISORDERED," she wrote, going on to implore her followers to "stop following and listening to celebrities for your health and wellness advice."

She went on to caution, "THIS IS NOT ENOUGH FOOD especially for someone that is [Gwyneth Paltrow’s height of] 5'9"."

Paltrow, of course, has a solution for this, and one that is utterly bizarre—getting her nutrients via IVs.

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Paltrow had an IV of nutrients in her arm while appearing on 'The Art of Being Well' podcast.

"As we're recording this right now, you have a little IV," Cole says to Paltrow in the podcast episode. "I love an IV," Paltrow replies, "I'm an early IV adopter."



She then describes her preferred intravenous nutrients—glutathione, and her favorite, a "kind of a random, more fringy one" called phosphatidylcholine. "That's my favorite IV when I can find them," she says urgently, "they're quite hard to find."

As for what she was pumping into her veins during the podcast, Paltrow reported it was "just a bag of good old-fashioned vitamins." If this seems like an utterly unhinged way to live, you are not alone.

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Comedian Rohita Kadambi thinks Ina Garten’s lifestyle is in some ways healthier than Paltrow’s.

Kadambi posted side-by-side photos of the two women to illustrate her point. In the screenshot from the podcast taping Kadambi used, 50-year-old Paltrow looks gaunt, pale exhausted, while 75-year-old chef Garten looks to be content, upbeat and thriving.

Kadambi was careful to point out in follow-up tweets that her intent was "not to shame/praise their bodies," but rather to compare the way the two women seem to feel about their bodies and their lives.

As Kadambi went on to say in her Twitter thread, "my point was Ina looks happy and Goop looks depressed."

"Gwyneth," Kadambi went on to say, "seems to be living her life like every day is a wellness/health chore and Ina seems to be living hers like every day is an absolute joy. It’s a better way to spend your time."

Of course, many medical professionals would probably caution that Garten, known for her decadent recipes and lifestyle as a "cocktail queen" who "eats bread" and "loves dessert," as Kadambi put it, is in danger of conditions like heart disease and diabetes that are linked to weight and dietary choices.

That may be true—and everyone has to make informed decisions and choose what’s best for them and their health. But the temptation is to consider this issue a black-and-white binary—you can either be overweight and decadent and unhealthy, or you can be a virtuous woman who eats one meal a day and supplements her nutrients with insanely expensive IV bags of vitamins.

The facts are that actual health outcomes are wildly different from person to person, and there is an increasing wealth of evidence that weight is not always correlated with health as we’ve been told to believe for decades.

But that aside, there is a lot of ground—a whole spectrum of moderation—between the two extremes that Garten and Paltrow represent.

And it’s impossible to argue in good faith that enjoying dessert, bread and cocktails—that is to say, actual food—is a less healthy, more disordered way to live than the deprivation and intravenous nutrients Paltrow relies on.

What is the point of living the way Paltrow does anyway? Eventually, her life will end just like everyone else’s. 

We all have an incredibly short and difficult period of time in which to live our lives before we pass away—lives that can be snuffed out before their time at any moment. Perhaps Paltrow will live longer than Garten—or maybe not. But it seems indisputable that Garten will have gotten more enjoyment out of her life than Paltrow seems to be getting out of hers.

Or as Kadambi eloquently put it, '75 years of joy is better than 50 years of 'wellness'" and "[Garten’s husband] Jeffrey > Jade egg." You can’t argue with that.

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John Sundholm is a news and entertainment writer who covers pop culture, social justice and human interest topics.