Celebrity health advice, fake news and the Internet Age

Divine.Wind

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Paltrow's "Jade Egg" came up on last night's episode of "@Midnight" (as a joke, of course). Googling it, I came up with several articles, one of which is linked below.

Besides the obvious inadvisability of taking health advice from someone just because they are a celebrity (and for no other reason) and the poor history of "celebrity health advice" (e.g. Jenny McCarthy's anti-vaccination campaign. Death count: 9000+), I think this phenomenon ties directly into the idea of "fake news" since both have exactly the same medium of transmission: the Internet. Without mass access and distribution by the Internet, both would be relegated to small print publications such as the National Enquirer and nutjobs handing out pamphlets in the city square.


OB-GYN doctor blasts Gwyneth Paltrow for claiming jade eggs in your vagina are a good idea
Gwyneth Paltrow is hawking a new product on her site Goop called the “Jade Egg.” The object is to be inserted vaginally to “harness the power of energy work, crystal healing, and a Kegel-like physical practice,” one endorsement explains. But one OBGYN was so furious after reading about the eggs she couldn’t hold back.

“All I can tell you is it is the biggest load of garbage I have read on your site since vaginal steaming,” Dr. Jen wrote on her blog. “It’s even worse than claiming bras cause cancer. But hey, you aren’t one to let facts get in the way of profiting from snake oil.”

(READ MORE: People take health advice from celebrities like Gwyneth Paltrow — but science shows they really shouldn’t)
 

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