After a trend of magical thinking and quick fixes, science-based solutions may not be so dull
Like a worm cut in half, its head regenerating into a new, even angrier worm, the “wellness” trend is one that refuses to die. But this week, its wiggle appeared to wane. A certain weariness had set in. Is this the end of wellness?
The evidence: “I was a huge fan of Gwyneth,” one attendee of Goop’s recent “wellness summit” in London told website Page Six, “Now I feel like I have lost my faith in God.” “GP [Paltrow],” said another, “is a fucking extortionist.” These were people who had spent up to £4,500 on weekend tickets, getting off the tube in Hammersmith as if landing in Lourdes, expecting to leave healed. What do they need healing from, you ask? Well, what have you got? Creepy energy, deep thirst, smell of cardboard, troubled pits, babyish sleeping, bad vagina – the beauty of the term “wellness” is that it encompasses almost everything, and can cost almost anything. Which is why I was excited to see the attendees rebel – a tipping point has been reached. Somewhere among the self-care stations and lavender lattes, a healthless revolution.
The health minister, Agnès Buzyn, a former doctor who has vowed to place scientific rigour at the heart of policy, said she had made the decision after a damning verdict on homeopathy by the national health authority in June.
Gwyneth Paltrow takes brand back to where it all began – with tickets going for up to £4,500
The healing field at Glastonbury, with its gong baths and laughter meditation, might have some of the trappings of the ever-expanding wellness industry, but it has competition. Because Goop, the controversial lifestyle brand and wellness empire founded by Gwyneth Paltrow, is bringing its summit, In Goop Health, to London this weekend.
The run-off between the two is being billed by the Evening Standard as “nu-wellness” v “old-school spirituality”. Paltrow sent the first Goop newsletter from her London kitchen more than 10 years ago, so the event is something of a homecoming, and the capital is Goop’s third-largest market behind the US and Canada.
Gwyneth loves them, Adele can’t sing without them and Kim Kardashian uses them to deal with stress. Many of us are lured by their beauty and promise of mystical powers, but are ‘healing’ crystals connecting us to the earth – or harming it?
Crystallisation is a transition from chaos to perfection; the evolution of the crystal industry has been less simple. Millions of years ago liquid rock inside the earth cooled and hardened, and this is how crystals formed at the twinkling centre of the earth. Piece by piece they’ve been mined to become the centre, too, of an international industry that hangs on their rumoured metaphysical healing properties. But recently something else has emerged from the rocks – a darker truth. Rather than connecting with the earth, those buying crystals are damaging it, fatally.
Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen gifted guests black tourmaline to keep negative energies at bay
The Japanese have known for years that spending mindful time in the woods is beneficial for body and soul. Now western doctors – and royals – agree
Every day, apart from when it’s raining heavily, Dr Qing Li heads to a leafy park near the Nippon Medical School in Tokyo where he works. It’s not just a pleasant place to eat his lunch; he believes the time spent under the trees’ canopy is a critical factor in the fight against diseases, of the mind and body.
Once a month Li spends three days in forests near Tokyo, using all five senses to connect with the environment and clear his mind. This practice of shinrin-yoku – literally, forest bath – has the power to counter illnesses including cancer, strokes, gastric ulcers, depression, anxiety and stress, he says. It boosts the immune system, lowers blood pressure and aids sleep. And soon it could be prescribed by British doctors.
Thousands of children put on alternative therapies amid measles outbreak, potentially exposing them to life-threatening illness
Thousands of American children are being put on homeopathic alternatives to vaccination by practitioners who claim they can prevent measles and “cure” autism, the Guardian has learned.
At least 200 homeopaths in the US are practicing a controversial “therapy” known as Cease that falsely asserts that it has the power to treat and even cure autism. The acronym stands for Complete Elimination of Autistic Spectrum Expression.
Gibson faced questions over her finances and spending, including a month-long trip to Africa, clothing and rent
The disgraced wellness blogger Belle Gibson has been questioned about her finances including investments in crypto-currency and futures trading by a barrister trying to determine why Gibson has not paid a $410,000 fine.
In 2017 Gibson was found guilty of numerous breaches of consumer law after she sold thousands of copies of her cookbook and wellness app off the back of false claims she cured her numerous cancers through shunning conventional medicine and following a healthy lifestyle and diet. She also falsely told consumers she would donate the money from sales of her cookbook and app to charity.