Whoa. That escalated quickly.
A woman who birthed a supermodel has also birthed her own line of beauty products, and an ideology to match.
Therese Kerr, 59, has been very busy.
She appeared on Studio 10 this morning, ostensibly to “talk about the dangers of hand sanitiser”, but really to spruik her wares, such as Certified Organic Lemon Myrtle Tooth Mousse and Certified Organic Personal Lubricant.
Ita Buttrose and I were both visibly taken aback by some of the as-yet unregistered doctor Kerr’s statements about certain common products.
For example: fluoride causes autism.
Fluoride! All it’s ever done in the more than 60 years since it entered our water, toothpastes and mouthwashes, is significantly reduce dental decay.
It is considered by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as “one of 10 great public health achievements of the 20th century”.
Never fear that nefarious fluoride though, because Kerr sells her own “tooth mousse” for just $19.95 per tube.
Next up, and here’s the real doozy: hand sanitisers contain “obesogens” that will make you fat.
This must be extremely concerning for all the actual healthcare professionals who rely on the stuff to ensure that diseases aren’t spread in hospitals and clinics around the world.
Now that Kerr has enlightened them, they’re probably just waiting for the day all their carelessness results in a sudden transformation which I imagine will look not unlike that of Eddie Murphy in The Nutty Professor.
Oh, but don’t worry, because Divine has an obesogen-free hand sanitiser for just $14.95!
Phew. That was close, you guys.
Kerr also says fragrances in products are the “number-one gender bender” and are “feminising little boys”.
“I’d better stop washing and brushing my teeth,” Buttrose said sardonically. “Everything’s dangerous!”
Kerr says that her Divine By Therese Kerr product line is designed to “compliment [sic] her daughter Miranda Kerr’s KORA Organics”.
Kerr previously worked as CEO of KORA Organics but “stepped down” for reasons unknown.
Watch Therese Kerr talking about very dangerous hand sanitiser below. Post continues after video.
I asked Studio 10 about the statements made by Kerr on this morning’s show, and whether the appearance was an advertisement for Kerr’s product line. I received the following statement from Studio 10’s executive producer Rob McKnight.
“The spot was not a paid spot, we booked Therese because she is a person of interest. It is not uncommon to promote a product to get an interview.
“Even with the pre-planning that goes into an interview, we were not aware Therese was going to make the claims between Fluoride and Autism. Jessica Rowe did challenge Therese on those claims but we were not in a position to challenge the research she was quoting as we were live on air with the segment and had no prior knowledge of the path the interview would go down.
“As the father of a child with Autism, I was shocked to hear the statement and it in no way is a belief held by the hosts or producer of Studio 10.”
Kerr’s product has been tested in a lab, and was found to be 99.99 per cent effective. However, Sydney GP Dr Ginni Mansberg says there is nothing wrong with regular hand sanitisers.
“There is no suggestion that it’s in any way toxic and definitely none that it causes obesity or autism. That’s complete bunkum,” Dr Mansberg told me.
“We do know that not washing your hands, particularly after going to the toilet or changing a nappy, is a key way to transmit infection. Clean hands save lives and hysteria over hand sanitiser makes no sense.”
What of the endocrine disruptors Kerr spoke of?
“The theory is that they could activate some estrogen receptors. There’s no evidence of this, and there would never be enough in hand sanitiser, unless you’re basically drinking the stuff.
“At worst, hand sanitisers keep people from getting sick. At best, they keep them from dying.”
Comments like Kerr’s, Dr Ginni says, cloud what is basically a very simple message: “Clean hands save lives.”
Kerr describes herself as an “author, speaker and visionary”, but interestingly , not “health professional”, “scientist” or “doctor”.
Her company’s mantra is: “As I embrace the richness of nature to cleanse and nurture my body, I restore myself, my divinity and the service I am to all that is.”
On her personal website, through which you can also purchase a great number of things including her book, Lunchbox Solutions, and her social media accounts, she offers advice such as, “Breastfeeding exposes babies to water- and stain-proofing chemicals.”
It’s not as if we didn’t know Therese Kerr is a little bit overzealous with her dedication to health and well-being.
When she shared her diet for My Day on a Plate in Sunday Life magazine, it was evident.
Kerr’s reverse osmosis water jazzed up with magnesium, vitamin C, zinc and selenium, and her homemade kefir provoked much media mirth.
These latest pronouncements are amusing, sure, but media outlets that give Kerr airtime should advise audiences that she is not a healthcare professional and that her claims for her Certified Organic lifestyle are made, just like Pete Evans‘ are, to sell a product.
They should be taken with a Certified Organic grain of pink Himalayan rock salt.
More on the Kerrs?