Gwyneth Paltrow has never taken hallucinogenic drugs. Actually, she’s barely smoked pot. ‘It either makes me bum out or fall asleep.’ But, aware of the fact that they are being touted as the next big thing in mental health, she is ‘very open’ to giving them a try. Particularly at this stage of her life. ‘It’s funny; I remember when I turned 40, interviewers going, “Oh my God, you’re 40! What does that mean?” – as if I was ready for the old people’s home. And yet, these past six years have been the most profoundly awakening years of my life.
‘Actually, we were just talking about it the other day. You have to go to Canada, where it’s legal [trials are being conducted there, but hallucinogens are not generally available for therapeutic use], and they give you MDMA or psilocybin to work on your issue or trauma. I mean it’s got to be done in the right setting and with a professional doctor, of course.’
It is a hazy morning in downtown LA, and Gwyneth and I are sitting in a trailer on a lot of Rolling Greens garden centre, the venue for In Goop Health, the wellness summit she hosts. I’ve had my free B12 shot and a large handful of caffeine-laced Nerd Alert Goop chews on offer here today along with cartons of Goop-approved low-alkaline water, Goop parasols and a whole bunch of other free Instagram-friendly swag.
Minutes earlier, Gwyneth (47), a picture of West Coast chic in a khaki G. Label playsuit and Robert Clergerie platforms, had appeared on the main ‘chatroom’ stage for the opening ceremony, which involved a Soulstrology sound bath set to the accompaniment of plant vibrations (the optional group vaginal steam will come afterwards, she quipped to a sea of raised iPhones), followed by a ‘fireside chat’ with the magnificent Elizabeth Gilbert. This evening, she’ll be back here with Jessica Alba, Olivia Wilde, Taraji P Henson and Busy Philipps. Later, I might get my 24-carat gold ear seed to ‘stimulate my aural reflex centres’, go to a talk on interpersonal IQ in committed relationships and, if I can steal a march on the queue of Vejasneakered, floral-frocked Goopies who have been waiting since 8am this morning, have a session in the Somadome meditation pod. Oh, gosh, and I must check out those famous jade eggs.
Last year, Goop paid £115000 to settle a lawsuit brought by the Californian authorities for allegedly ‘misleading’ customers that the jade (£60) or rose quartz (£50) pessaries could regulate menstrual cycles, prevent uterine prolapse and increase bladder control. The company ended up offering refunds to the people who had bought them – though they said they settled without admitting liability – and now if you order them on the site, the description box is empty.
Well, I ask GP, what’s the deal? Should I get one? Do they actually do anything?
‘Of course you should,’ she says in that languid yet somewhat mechanical drawl. ‘I’m not kidding. Do it. They’re fantastic. For everything.’
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