Wait, isn’t it good that 7 million people are tuning in to watch a game show on weight loss, when the United States is in the middle of a weight crisis?
Yep, but rather than encouraging people to make permanent lifestyle changes, it’s yet another show encouraging rapid weight loss solutions, at any cost, regardless of the long-term effectiveness or negative side effects. He goes on to talk about how, due to the extreme caloric restriction, the metabolism of these participants had slowed down to an equivalent of 500 calories a day – predisposing them to massive rebound weight gain unless they continued to restrict calories or do a ridiculous amount of exercise. 10 million viewers a week potentially trying to emulate the dangerous weight loss practices they see on the show.
In reality, none of these are secrets, and neither of them are healthy long-term approaches to weight loss. By far my biggest beef with this show is that the participants are just put on an absurdly calorie restricted diet. When the emphasis is simply to lose as much weight as possible, eating as little as possible will work in the short term (in the SHORT term), because the body is literally starving. On and on this cycle goes until the person has no energy, loses half their muscle, and can barely function throughout the day all while wondering they aren’t losing weight anymore.
So now, despite kids already being bombarded with images of ultra fit men and women, they’re subconsciously getting the idea that they need to just keep eating less to weigh less.
Now we have eating disorders on the rise… and bad weight loss role models on the rise. There are better, real, sustainable approaches to weight loss that don’t leave you praying for death. So every morning, he’d wake up, lift weights for an hour in the basement, and then make a nice fresh vegetable juice for breakfast with two eggs. When I asked him if he looked like he had lost weight, he said he did notice looking much different.. No, what was happening was that he was making muscular gains and wasn’t accounting for that in his weight.
But if you invest into changing your habits, rather than relying on willpower, and if you find ways to enjoy the process and take it slow, you will inevitably reach your destination.
I understand that the Biggest Loser is supposed to serve some kind of morbid inspiration to a country that is sick and overweight.
But it’s just plain terrible advice to emulate if you are looking for real, sustainable weight loss.
1) Focus on eating the right food, and when you do, the right amount will take care of itself.
I have profiled several success stories so far of dramatic weight loss – 100+ pounds, and 66 pounds. Besides the obvious no-fun of starving yourself, dramatically dropping your caloric intake is a great way to end up with stalled weight loss, decrease energy, poor sleep, and PMS (even if you’re a guy). I’ve talked about it time and time again, but changing your eating habits will account for the majority of your success. Personal trainers constantly complain that their clients train with them every week, but don’t change what they eat. Here’s the thing: Goals are great to temporarily motivate you, but what happens when you get obsessed with the goal and ignore the other 364 days working toward the goal?
Being healthy is just as much internal as it is external, and you need to work on both to really feel whole. But what is really scarey is that moronic parents allow their kids to watch it and join in. I used to watch the Biggest Lose because I considered it entertaining, but in time I came to the same realization as you, Alex, and I started wondering why on Earth would anyone endorse this kind of approach to weight loss? The thing is that the show producers place their bets on the fact that those people are desperate, they’d do anything to lose weight.
I used to like to watch the Biggest Loser and was, for a time, obsessed with weight loss shows.
What I wouldn’t believe was that all of this would get me to a healthy place physically and emotionally.
I have watched Biggest loser and I always cried because I could never do the things they were doing.

Master The Day is a book that addresses the real reason we struggle with health and living a really good life: habits. The Biggest Loser Club is a scientifically proven way to lose weight – and keep it off. Log into the member home page and you'll find everything necessary to control your weight loss at your fingertips, from dinner ideas to your personal fat-burning workouts. Our online diary features detailed nutrition information for huge range of foods, including supermarket brands and popular takeaways.
Our motivating graphs and charts mean you'll never miss an opportunity to celebrate your weight loss success. Want to receive delicious recipes, calorie-burning exercises and educational health and weight loss articles for FREE? Recently I had the opportunity to talk with Margie Krueger who started her weight loss journey at 400 pounds and has been working her way down down down to a weight loss success story!
Krueger won the Biggest Loser’s Second Chance Contest on Facebook and the prize is a six month stay to their Utah resort.
Margie and I talked on the phone for over an hour about weight loss, running, food and the Biggest Loser Resort (she was there when we chatted).
It is about more than the scale – it’s about the stuff in our head and our heart that is holding us back like a prisoner.
RER: We’ve all seen the show The Biggest Loser with the big scale – but how often do you weigh in at the resort? For breakfast there are five things you can choose from – egg scramble with toast, a smoothie with chocolate and a protein choice. Margie is sharing her journey on her Facebook page if you want to stay posted on her awesome progress! Question: Can we get a big Congratulations for Margie’s journey so far and some encouraging words for her?! Wow, you really can see how beautiful her face is now that she’s lost some of that weight! Side note: I always leave bottles of water in my car because you never know when you might need one.
I just wanted to say thank you for highlighting the importance of healing the mind as well as the body during weight loss. And they pass the information onto their friends that also say “Yeah that sounds right. Every morning he was weighing himself on the scale, and it actually hadn’t budged much in three months. Depending on where your current body weight is, just shifting to the right types of foods will naturally result in the right number of calories.
I’m just worried about it furthering weight loss stereotypes and misinformation, all while spreading a hatred for people with weight issues.
Watching the show, they don’t really show what their real daily diets are, but it does seem like contestants have a ton of control in what they eat.
If they were all getting injuries, they wouldn’t be able to do the programs every day for months. Contestants are losing 20 pounds of water weight and then (acting) bewildered when they gain 5 pounds the next week. People doing it for the right reasons succeed long term (20%) and the majority doing it for wrong reasons fall back into their same habits (80%). I came across this article after the latest American biggest loser has shocked the audience with her gaunt 47kg frame.
My entire approach to health is this: once you understand the power of your own mind and psychology, and once you get the power of tiny daily habits (rather than willpower and discipline) success is a piece of cake. Power your weight loss with the same tools as The Biggest Loser contestants, including delicious, nutritionally-balanced menu plans with snacks and treats, a comprehensive online diary, expert advice, and all the support and motivation you’ll ever need from a buzzing community. Take control of your healthy eating habits with calorie countdowns, energy equation and nutrition graphs.
Each one features technique tips and step-by-step instructions to help you safely exercise to lose weight.

Then register to The Biggest Loser Club newsletter to receive your weekly dose of healthy know-how all delivered to your inbox! So when I got back in my car after my run I was happy to find the gallon of water I had left there from my last road trip to Paso Robles. Margie is losing weight the the Biggest Loser Resort at Fitness Ridge, a company rep hooked me up with her to discuss her journey. Margie was 400 pounds at her highest weight but started to get healthy in 2006 and lost 200 pounds!
The entrees for lunch are a lot of different things like Chinese Chicken Salad to Chicken Alfredo. It’s things like celery with peanut butter, and apple with string cheese, hard boiled egg with something else.
I’m currently in school to become a therapist, and want to specialize in working with patients who struggle to lose weight or keep it off. It’s meant to be ridiculous for ratings because people need to be paid and feed their kids. No wonder people think that celebrities need to invest disgusting amounts of time in the gym. He was noticing maybe a 3-5 pound difference in his weight, but it wasn’t anything dramatic. The more you treat it like a beast to conquer, chances are the less fun it’s going to become. As a normal person, working or studying, having family and a social life, it is impossible to work out daily for 4 to 6 hours. I support anyone tackling their health and weight issues, but this sort of show is just dangerous for all.
Unfortunately it’s a quantum leap backward for those trying to learn the healthy way to lose weight.
I even have a spreadsheet with weekly goals on how much I want to lose for the next year, how many calories to eat, what workouts to do, etc. Unfortunately, she wasn’t able to keep the weight off and is now using this opportunity as a second chance to change her life for good. I think it’s important to remember that a big part of losing weight is changing your mindset! Even if they are on highly restrictive diets, these can be used without putting your body into starvation mode.
If you are going to do a tv contest and fitness, I can’t think of a better way to do it.
But the 10%-20% who really want to make a life style change, the program works for them, and they keep the weight off. If you want to lose the weight in three months (which is hard when you have to work) do the Biggest Loser program.
It sets up ridiculous expectations and instils a failure mindset in watchers, and the methods employed on the show are extreme and barbaric to contestants, as you explain. If there is something you don’t like there is always tuna or chicken salad you can have instead. I need to learn how to let things happen naturally and not focused so much on the end result.
Facts are most the contests come out looking lean, muscular, and vibrant, not in poor health at all. So they can give the viewing audience what they want: Rapid, extreme results, tears, tantrums, injuries, a true specticle. But if you really are a part of the 20% you will succeed, no matter what program you choose, unless it truly is a bad program. As a health psychologist, I can hardly think of a worse way to help people deal with the long term behavioural and emotional issues that have led them to be morbidly obese.

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