Gwyneth Paltrow recently revealed that she was one of the thousands of Americans who contracted COVID-19 in the early days of the virus. But, she says, she kept her sickness under wraps for months because like so many others, she couldn't get tested.
The actress and Goop founder shared in February that she "had COVID-19 early on, and it left me with some long-tail fatigue and brain fog." Speaking this week with The Hollywood Reporter, Paltrow, 48, said that, contrary to the rumors, she didn't keep it a secret out of concern that people would compare her to her character in Contagion — but because of the lack of tests.
"I got it so early that there weren't COVID tests available," she said. "We couldn't even get tested for a long time, and by the time we were able to get antibody tests and all of that, there were much graver, more important things going on in the world. I didn't really feel the need to bring it up, but it was interesting."
Paltrow has said that she believes she got infected during a trip to Paris last year, and dealt with lingering symptoms through the rest of 2020. In a blog post on the Goop site, the Oscar-winner said she had tests done in January that "showed really high levels of inflammation in my body," which led her to seek out alternative treatments like following a keto and plant-based diet, doing intermittent fasting and taking supplements.
After Paltrow shared those recommendations with her readers, she got backlash from the scientific community for promoting untested treatments. Stephen Powis, the national medical director of England's National Health Service, said that the Shakespeare in Love star's advice are "really not the solutions we'd recommend."
"We need to take long COVID seriously and apply serious science," he continued. "All influencers who use social media have a duty of responsibility and a duty of care around that."
When asked by the Hollywood Reporter if she pays attention to that kind of criticism, Paltrow said, "Sometimes, but it's usually that I always find it's for their own amplification."
"We really are not to say at Goop that we have never made mistakes because of course we have in the past, but we're very much in integrity and we're careful about what we say," she continued. "We always feel like we understand why a lot of that [criticism] becomes clickbait for people."
The mom of two, who has abstained from sugar and alcohol over the last few months and started doing intermittent fasting to lose the 14 lbs. she gained during the pandemic and as part of her alternative COVID-19 treatments, said that she's feeling better.
"I also think that nine months in quarantine with having pasta and cake and alcohol seven days a week probably didn't help," she said. "So, I've been on a really great clean eating routine and then teetotalling for a couple of months now, and that always really helps with anything that's going on in the body."
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