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Meet a Fierce Advocate for Women’s Health: Jen Gunter, MD


March 25, 2022 — Jen Gunter, MD, refuses to remain silent when she sees deceptive claims about girls’s well being merchandise.

The truth is, the world’s most well-known — and outspoken — OB/GYN (as described by The Guardian), is on a social media mission to talk up at any time when she sees corporations or governments “prey on girls’s well being and vaginal disgrace.”

With practically 400,000 followers, Gunter by no means shies away from an argument.

Simply this week, she railed against vitamin and complement maker Olly’s vaginal probiotic, taking the corporate to process for its product premise and objectionable advert copy.

WebMD caught up with the San Francisco-based physician and writer of two books, The Vagina Bible and The Menopause Manifesto. The next interview has been evenly edited for size and readability.

WebMD: So these Olly capsules purport to be “Probiotics for Your Panty Hamster.” What was your response to this?

Gunter: Seeing the phrase “panty hamsters” is so egregious. I’m so used to baseline vaginal opportunism, however this was simply completely egregious and I needed to name it out.

WebMD: What are vaginal probiotics anyway?

Gunter: These are one among these massive wellness scams the place corporations attempt to promote you on someway hacking your microbiome by taking them. They’re not cheap, both, and might vary in worth from $30 to $150 monthly, relying on how bespoke they’re. And but the info isn’t good. There’s little to no proof of the worth of those probiotics besides to shareholders.

WebMD: What’s one declare made within the Olly probiotic packaging that bothers you essentially the most?

Gunter: The product claims to steadiness the vaginal pH. To say that could be a gross misunderstanding of the vaginal ecosystem. If that tagline is what you’re main with, what else don’t ?

Additionally, if this stuff labored, we’d suggest them. Vaginitis is advanced and sometimes misdiagnosed, and it’s simple for a corporation to be predatory and swoop in and say they’ve a product for you.

If I feel your product for the vagina is terrible and you haven’t studied it in at the least one high quality clinical trial (by no means thoughts company-funded or not), and your advertising and marketing shows a surprising ignorance about vaginal well being, don’t method me about your product. Actually.

WebMD: When there’s a popular culture reference to, say, menstruation, you’re fast to weigh in.

Gunter: I noticed these viral messages from a boy mother (that’s what she known as herself) the place she wrote about being disgusted that there have been mentions of intervals in Turning Red, the animated film.

Every part is right here due to menstruation. Should you didn’t menstruate, you wouldn’t have a child, we wouldn’t have the one who had the intelligence to construct the pc you’re spreading this message on. Menstruation is a crucial a part of human replica, and it’s way more advanced than folks suppose. For that purpose alone, folks ought to find out about it

WebMD: Do you ever get frightened about being so “on the market” on social media?

Gunter: I’ve my stalkers I suppose, however the trolls don’t hassle me. I don’t care if some no matter artwork supplier in New York thinks I’ve psychological sickness for selling masks. That’s the very best you’ve acquired? Truthfully, this doesn’t even register with me. It’s like throwing a grain of sand at a automobile.

WebMD: You additionally acquired into an trade with Dr. Leana Wen, CNN’s medical analyst, about masks carrying.

Gunter: She clearly has a distinct opinion than I do. I feel one of many largest points within the pandemic is the change in messaging and this concept that someway folks aren’t residing their regular lives proper now. I used to be unhappy to see her promote that idea.

This weekend I went out for lunch, I went furnishings procuring, I went to the flicks, I took a hike. My household and I put on masks in all places. I fail to know how carrying a masks means you’re not residing a standard life when it’s clearly linked with the lowered unfold of the virus.

Nearly every part in medication is about danger discount. You are able to do issues to decrease your danger of coronary heart illness. It’s not 100% assured, however wouldn’t we would like a decrease danger of dangerous issues? I’m going to maintain carrying a masks perpetually!

WebMD: Do you would like extra docs had been extra vocal such as you?

Gunter: I want extra docs would have conversations about well being exterior of the workplace in methods they’re comfy with. Like, you’re on the hairdresser and also you share data, otherwise you share data with 15 of your Fb mates. Should you’re a health care provider and submit an article about COVID-19 and the way it impacts the heart, your 15 mates usually tend to learn that article than in case your good friend who’s a lawyer places that up.

As docs, I imagine we will typically affect folks in massive and small methods.

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