Does anyone think that it is realistic though? It is a reality show. I think taking it as anything more than that does it a disservice. Beyond that though it can be entertaining and inspirational. Whether they are secluded or not people do get healthy there. to see the season where a 523 pound man lost 1/2 of his weight was inspirational. They don't all keep it off, but neither do people who follow traditional plans including Spark people. My advice take it for what it is, entertainment but there is inspiration to be had. Don't close your mind to that.
Glad to read this. Totally agree and personally find the show distasteful. I think it should also be said that the participants are specially chosen, partly due to their body composition and likelyhood to quickly loose fat w this type of method. Not all methods work for everyone .
I'm glad to see someone at SparkPeople say this, because it's what I've thought for a long time. The people who run this show are trying to put together an entertaining TV show, not educate the public or optimize life for any of the participants.
I have seen people who believe that their only chance for a normal weight is to get on the show and have their lives seized and made over by an outside force. The real "reality" is just the opposite--finding the strength from within to persist with gaining a healthy lifestyle.
While this article makes some very valid and well-worded points, it was obviously written a few years ago. (8 seasons? Ha!) Since then former contestants have come out and said that the weeks are more than a calendar week, especially in the beginning (so they have more time to lose weight), that many people are dehydrating and using laxatives before weigh-ins, and that they are basically starving themselves. Between that and the obvious set-up drama, I stopped watching the show. While it can be motivating in some ways, I think it sets a bad and unrealistic example for the most part.
I was so afraid this was going to be a bashing of truths making me squirm. It was a very well put article of things we should be learning or have learned on this journey to a healthier lifestyle. I loved this. It is a fun show and like all tele shows (reality based or not) it's just not real. LOL
thanks for sharing.
My favorite tip is "competing against yourself and not others" I do feel bad about the contestants feeling about about these great weight loss against someone else, but it's also a game. hard to mix the two.
I stopped watching BL early on because it made me feel awful to see the pain the contestants often were put to. I think a lot of reality shows are staged and faked, but I felt the pain these contestants were in was too real and something too hard to fake. I know people who have been in boot camp type situations, and humiliation and lots of pain did not improve them.
Very good to see this article! It validates what I felt about the show. I know from where I speak; a lifetime of trying to lose weight. I identified every single one of those points before reading this. Thanks!
I agree with everything you said. My doctor recently told me just about the same thing. You have a great, clean writing style. I hope to read more of your articles. Thanks!
2/7/2014 8:55:19 PM
"The Biggest Loser" is also incredibly dehumanizing and abusive to participants. One of the former winners has even come out saying that being on the show gave her an eating disorder. Most of the contestants gain all the weight back and then some. It promotes the idea that thinness at any cost is healthy and desirable, it enforces the stigma against fat people, that they are lazy, slovenly, less than humans who deserve to be berated and abused for our entertainment. It's possibly the worst show on TV. Here's a great article about it: http://jezebel.com/freaked-out-by-rachel-f redrickson-s-biggest-loser-win-1518433744
Thank you for putting it back into perspective. It would be easier to lose weight under those conditions - but I'd rather eat right on my own and teach my children about portion size and that "healthy' food can also taste good!
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