When Wellness Is Bad For Us

Buckle up, there’s some twists ahead

L.L. Kirchner
8 min readOct 11, 2021

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Photo: engin akyurt / Unsplash

I consider myself pro-wellness. A fan of things natural. Anti-plastic. But as a former New York City yoga teacher and daughter of health club owners, I’ve watched in astonishment as my fellow healthy lifestyle enthusiasts (and my dad) have slid down a slippery linguistic slope, only to land in the lap of the anti-vax world. I wrote about feeling hit over the head by this phenomenon after bingeing Hulu’s Nine Perfect Strangers, a show where guests at a wellness retreat get microdosed because “natural” equals “safe.”

But the more significant trend—that Venn diagram where green juice drinkers and rabid white supremacists intersect in an anti-vax middle—is how the language of wellness itself is facilitating this transition. And how we’re all susceptible to these pseudoscience messages.*

Take, for example, Nicki Minaj’s recent Twitter debacle. After informing her 22 million followers that her cousin’s friend what’s-his-face was dumped at the altar over vaccine-induced testicular swelling, Minaj found herself defending the disinformation. In a later Tweet she assured her fans that if she did get vaccinated, “it’ll be once I feel I’ve done enough research.” Also probably in order to be able to go on tour. Her final words on whether to be vaccinated could have come from any wellbeing…

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L.L. Kirchner

I write entertaining stories that sneak up on you. Florida Girls, my new novel, comes out May 28! Stay abreast of it all at IllBehavedWomen.com.