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Good idea or bad idea?

Monday, January 14, 2013

I kept missing the biggest loser but finally caught up on the 2 shows I missed and am watching the third right now (don't worry I won't spoil the end for anyone).

My daughter who is 10 is watching this show with me right now while doing her homework and I can't decide whether I should keep (or even make) her watch it in the future or let her do what she wants. My family on my side is full of overweight men and women and I fear that in her future she's going to struggle a lot with her weight as well. I want her to understand the struggle I'm going through with a quarter or the workouts these people do and also the turmoil these people and myself go through in their own heads with the little self worth they have and I want her to see how hard it would be for her if she puts herself second and eats whatever she wants and doesn't stay active but at the same time I don't want her to misunderstand and put too much worth in a certain type of body image or to think that if she does happen to gain a few extra pounds that she's worthless or anything like that.

What do you guys think? Would it be beneficial for her or harmful for her to watch this show with me? I'm kinda torn between it.
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RUNNERRACHEL 1/15/2013 3:27PM

    I don't like watching the biggest loser because it portrays exercise as punishment or something that looks torturous. What I'm done with my daughter is having her participate with me in activities like soccer, yoga, dance, running, walking, and other activities. I want her to have a positive image of being active and making fitness and regular part of her life. I never use the F word and by that I mean fat. I want her to have a positive self image and think of healthy food and exercise and a good part of her life.

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KAEBAE 1/15/2013 8:56AM

    I say, let her come to it naturally. If she's interested she'll watch. My 12 year-old girl was sitting in the room with me while I watched and she switched between IMing with her friend and watching. When she does watch I talk about what's happening, like how people don't generally lose 11 pounds in a single week, and other observations based on the healthy things we learn here on Spark. If she's not interested though, I wouldn't worry about it. The way you live will have more influence on her (and a more realistic one at that) than the show.

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JASI27 1/15/2013 8:54AM

    The biggest loser motivates me! I would never want to be on the show, but to see those people who are just like me actually doing it, gives me drive to do it myself. It is tv, there has to be some unrealistic features to it or it would get old and boring. I wouldn't force my kids to watch it, but wouldn't discourage it either. As long as you are being a role model that is what she will follow, trust me here!! My oldest son is 20, and he is now obese just as I am. Even though I made sure their meals were healthy and well rounded, restricted pop and candy and all things made of junk, he still followed in my footsteps of emotional eating because he watched me binge and hide my feelings with food. It is what they are modeled, not what they are taught. My twins are not overweight, because they got their dad's metabolism, but their diets are horrible. My girl eats nothing but crap (candy and white pastas make up her diet) and my boy just eats whatever but doesn't think twice about grabbing a monster or mountain dew or some crap like that when I didn't allow caffeine as they were growing up. ROLE MODEL ROLE MODEL ROLE MODEL! This is just my opinion.

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FIRESTARINFINI 1/15/2013 12:02AM

    I honestly hate the biggest loser. Jillian Michael's in her workout videos is a lot more realistic, but in the biggest loser I've seen people worked to the point of almost getting injured. Any actual trainer would tell those people to stop and work up their strength.

I also hate how they build in things into the games, like the one where you can eat cupcakes to take time off a race, but then Jillian is like "Oh don't you feel bad for eating cupcakes?"

Dude you made up the rules, that's just mean.

The Biggest Loser is not realistic to the real world.

Losing weight is hard work, but it also takes support and reasonable expectations, not "OH MY GOD I ONLY LOST TEN POUNDS THIS WEEK."

Or

"I can't have my favorite food ever."

I really hate the biggest loser.

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CHRISTINA791 1/14/2013 10:49PM

    I'm not a parent, but if you have her watching Biggest Loser, I'd balance it out with something more positive and realistic. Not that BL is necessarily negative, but it makes weight loss and living healthy look really freaking hard. It's hugely inspiring to see other people going through it and succeeding, but I think it's also easy to get caught up in the idea that weight loss is a monumental task rather than a lot of small, good decisions that add up.

At that age, my instinct would be to start planting some healthy seeds that make it a natural part of her life. Not "Mom has to work like these guys on TV because she's overweight," but "This is how we live because we're healthy". One documentary I watched recently, 'Hungry for Change', talked about adding good habits instead of taking away the bad, and eventually they'd just push the bad ones out. I like that mindset.

So while BL isn't bad, I think it would also be cool to show the fun and happy side of healthy living too. Maybe sign up for a fun run together and train for it, or let her pick out the ingredients for a salad at the farmer's market. That way it's a double sided attack: show the hard work, but also show that it doesn't have to be painful or punishment.

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MALA77 1/14/2013 10:25PM

    I have 4 kids, (3 girls and a boy) and my oldest two are 10 yr old twins. They do watch the show with me occasionally. One of my twins is on the "thicker" side while the other twin is a bean pole!!! So I do worry a little about the thick one because she is like me. I was always heavier as a kid, not obese but heavier (although by today's standards I am considered obese!!) ANyway, I think it IS important for them to see what people go through to lose weight and all the horrible side effects of being overweight and obese. My kids also play sports (off season right now though) so that keeps them active AND they play outside, something too many kids these days DON'T do anymore like we did when we were kids. I think as long as you let your daughter know the important things about weight and healthy weight, and let her know that she is precious no matter what, she will be ok. Keep her active, teach her that exercise is FUN and not a punishment. Get her into sports. Maybe you don't have to let her watch ALL the shows but enough for her to get the idea of what's healthy and what's not. Good luck!!!

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