Biggest Losers Big Problem – Is This Reality TV Weight Loss Program Helping Fuel Obesity

Millions tune in each week to follow The Biggest Loser reality TV show to see contestants compete for big prizes. Viewers, often relaxing in an easy chair munching chips, watch as seriously overweight men and women weigh in weekly and log remarkable weight loss results, up to 20 to 30 pound lost in a single week!


Trouble In Weight Loss Paradise

A recent Time Magazine article reported Ryan Benson, the season one winner, has regained 90 of the 120 pounds he lost during the competition. The article went on to describe contestants eating nothing but sugar-free Jell-O and asparagus for days, and wearing rubber suits in the sauna for hours just prior to weekly weigh-ins.

Despite best intentions, the unspoken message of the program is fatally flawed. Rapid weight loss is UNHEALTHY, UNSAFE, UNSUSTAINABLE and may result in serious metabolic disorder, raging nutritional deficiency and a damaged heart and besides that, no one is going to offer you a quarter of a million dollars to lose weight.


Biggest Loser Fatal Flaw #1 – The Wrong Motivation

Contestants compete for prize money, which is fine, but if winning cash is the only real motivation, all but a few will lose interest sooner or later, and what about after the contest is over?

People who succeed at LASTING weight loss develop an inner drive and motivation based on a personal desire to be healthy and to look and feel their best. And they want that for themselves regardless of prize money, swimsuit season or anything else.

It’s no fault of The Biggest Loser that money motivates people to do silly things they’d never dream of otherwise, like starving for weeks and wearing a rubber suit in the sauna, but the fact remains most will never have the chance to win money and be a TV star by losing weight.


Biggest Loser Fatal Flaw #2

The number one reason people fail to lose weight and keep it off is they attack fat, (which is a symptom of an underlying problem), and have no idea of the real reason why they’re overweight, which for most, is hormonal imbalance caused primarily by poor food choices. And by the way, simply cutting calories NEVER solves this problem.


Biggest Loser contestants go extraordinary lengths to starve fat off, melt it off, exercise it off, and do anything they can to get rid of the fat. And they lose weight. But like EVERYONE who loses weight the wrong way, when starvation and hours-a-day exercise stops, the weight piles back on with a vengeance.

The few Biggest Loser contestants who manage to keep the weight off more than a few months after the contest, either maintain extreme weight loss measures, which is difficult at best OR figure out an approach to diet and nutrition that keeps fat-burning metabolism actives and minimizes fat production and storage in your body.


The Danger Is Real

The ups and downs of roller coaster weight gain and loss are devastating to your health. Each round of weight gain and weight loss reduces lean muscle mass, slows metabolism, weakens the heart and makes you more susceptible to illness and disease.

The Biggest Loser Program is not responsible for the insane lengths contestants go to for the chance to win a quarter of a million dollars, but the fact remains extreme weight loss puts your health at risk, and at the very least there should be disclaimers to that effect warning views NOT to try this at home.

Imelda Despres

Imelda Despres is our writer for the Baby, Health and Beauty categories. She was a nutritionist for 5 years before joining the team. When she's not researching, she enjoys weekend getaways with her family at the lake.

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