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An unhealthy show that claims to promote health

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

There are a lot of fans of "The Biggest Loser." Some people are inspired by it.
I find it to be very unrealistic & unhealthy.

Oh, did I mention degrading? Come on! Have you see the women in sports bras? They could at least let them wear tank tops or T-shirts or something besides sports bras. They know they are overweight. We know they are overweight. Wearing an actual shirt won't change that. I would be really pissed off if I was one of those women & they said you are wearing this.

Continuing to exercise until you are physically ill to the point where you vomit is not just pushing yourself a little more. It's DANGEROUS. If you go to a gym & you read the little notes on the machines, it will say "STOP EXERCISING IF YOU FEEL FAINT, DIZZY OR NAUSEATED. I just don't agree with Jillian Michael's motto to not quit unless you faint, puke or die.

Speaking of Jillian Michaels, I do not like her training style. Maybe she cares about the contestants & wants the best for them but if a trainer treated me like that, they would be fired in a heartbeat. I want to be encouraged. I don't want to feel like a am being bullied into a healthier lifestyle. Maybe bullied isn't the right word but personally, when it comes to weight loss, tough love or whatever you want to call it isn't for some people.

Another thing. They teach people how to avoid temptation but they get punished for giving in. Nobody is going to perfect on this journey. There is a point where we give in. We can't punish ourselves. Isn't the point of a healthy lifestyle balance? They don't teach balance on the show.

Time. Most people cannot stop their lives & go live on a ranch & workout for 4, 5, 6, 7 hours at a time. Nobody should ever workout for that many hours at a time.

That's why I don't watch the biggest loser. I just find it to be very unrealistic & uninspiring. Weight loss is a slow process. People with normal metabolism will lose 1-2 lbs per week. Have you seen the weigh ins and how much people lose? It's gives people the idea that they can lose that much weight too if they just push themselves. *Some* people are overweight because they have an eating disorder. They are ill just like a person with Anorexia is ill but they don't address that on the show. The show shows that people just don't have knowledge about healthy eating. Well, Binge eating and compulsive eating are eating disorders & that should be discussed on the show more because a lot of people can probably relate to that.

If those reasons aren't enough to be turned off by the show,
they never address autoimmune or endocrine issues or issues that could make
weight loss more difficult. They just tell the contestants to try harder. I know that the contestants have to get an okay from a doctor but in my eyes, that doesn't make the show any better at all.

If you do get inspired by weight loss shows, try watching "The Revolution." That is much more realistic + if someone is struggling even by doing everything they are suppose to, they will address possible health conditions.

Weight loss is a slow process. Change should be done slowly, overtime. Not drastically. When you exercise, go at your pace. You can build on that & then do a little more & then a little more. If you didn't quit exercising until you fainted or puked, you probably would never want to exercise again. If you exercise until you died, you would never be able to exercise or reach your goals. It's okay to push yourself but don't push yourself so much you make yourself sick. Punishing yourself for giving into temptation won't help you with anything. You have to accept it, forgive yourself & move on.

Here's to a healthy, realistic journey!

Member Comments About This Blog Post:

    The BL is shocking reality TV that under scores all the unrealistic expectations of weight loss. Interesting tv--yes. Emotional feel good show-- maybe. Losing 100 lbs with stressful exercise routines and food restrictions -- absolutely. I am not a proponent because we are a fragile bunch that will buy anything promising significant weight loss. It is not healthy and not fair that tv can continue to exploit us.

That's why I love Spark. I am in charge of my health but taking realistic measures to get in control of my health and fitness. Slow and steady wins this race.

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LILAC_LANE 1/17/2013 7:17AM

    When I watching BL it was food for my ED.
It's sad how many people buy into the idea that
you can punish your body like they do on that show
and not suffer any consequences.
Good for you for speaking out!

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CHRISBEM 1/16/2013 6:56PM

    I agree with this. From the couple of times I saw the show when my mom would watch it, we would always talk about how we were impressed by how much weight these people would lose, but wondered how they would keep it off once back in the real world.

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SGRAY478 1/16/2013 1:17PM

    I apologize but I respectfully disagree. While some of the things about the show are ridiculous (punishing for giving into temptation, making the girls wear just their sports bras, voting people off that actually need help and want to be there...) there is at least one good part about the show.

It makes people think about obesity and their choices. Yes it does tend to give some people unrealistic expectations about weight loss, but I can tell you I feel more motivated with the show on. I see them working out and eating well and it makes me want too.

I see a 400 lb person working and it makes me remember that even though I am heavy, there is no reason that I can't work out. Yes I do believe that people do get pushed hard, but they signed up for it. They knew that going into the show.

Also, personally, I love Jillian. Granted not all the times (she has a tendency to go too far). But I personally like a trainer that yells to motivate me. They push me farther than I think I can go. I chose that in a personal trainer myself and in my spin instructor. I don't want someone coddling me.

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SUECHRIS50 1/16/2013 12:04PM

    I tend to agree with everything you said!!!It's just wrong and misleading emoticon

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ARCHIMEDESII 1/16/2013 11:54AM

    I watched the show the first couple of seasons because it seemed (slightly) more realistic. The reason I stopped watching was because it seemed the contestants were getting bigger and bigger and bigger. I feel the show places far too much emphasis on a quick loss than they do on promoting "healthy" habits. they reinforce the notion that if you starve yourself and exercise for hours a day, you can lose weight fast. That sets a very bad precedent. There are people watching this show who believe they should be dropping 10-15 pounds a week too.

Of course, what they don't tell you is that a week on BL is not the same as a seven day week. 2-3 weeks could pass between weigh ins, but you're not told this. I feel the producers push the contestants to lose weight too fast. It's just not realistic.

a spark buddy of mine once said,"No one wants to watch a show where people maintain their weight". Everyone wants to see the dramatic loss. Ever notice BL has never had a show with contestants who regained the weight. They should. I can tell you why so many regained the weight. It's because they weren't taught healthy habits.

Another reason I don't like Jillian ? Her weight loss pills ! In every interview I saw of her plus her book Making the Cut, she says that pills don't work. And yet, she is pushing her own brand of calorie burner, colon cleanse and energy booster. Guess she now endorses weight loss pills as long as they are her own pills !!

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UNSWEETMAMA 1/16/2013 11:31AM

    Thank you for this dose of perspective on the show. I used to watch it and feel inspired. But then I would think to myself that I couldn't leave my family and dedicate weeks and months to weight loss - and I didn't feel inspired to do it on my own in a healthy way - so I thought there was nothing I could do.

Thank goodness for SparkPeople and other healthy, realistic approaches.
emoticon emoticon

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IZZYBEBOP 1/16/2013 10:55AM

    I watched it only once, when this guy lost a challenge and had to eat cookies. Punishing someone who wants to lose weight by making him eat cookies? That is degrading. After that I never watched it again.
I do like JM's workouts, but honestly don't really like her personally.

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TIME2BLOOM4ME 1/16/2013 10:36AM

    emoticon I refuse to watch foolish people. Enough said.

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SLIMMERJESSE 1/16/2013 9:41AM

    Before turning off the TV for good (awhile ago), I watched this show once. That was more than enough for me. As usual, society is reinforcing all of the wrong things by watching. Very unhealthy.

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JUSTLLAMA 1/16/2013 9:36AM

    I can't love this blog enough! I agree with what you are saying 110%! Every article I've read about this show talks about how it basically sets these people up for failure. The programs they have their users on are not realistic and not healthy.

And I think Jillian Michaels is a bad person. I think she belittles, badgers and embarrasses people instead of truly encouraging them. I refuse to buy anything associated with her and definitely will not watch TBL.

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DBELLE39 1/16/2013 8:16AM

    I've never watched the show, but you brought out some interesting points. And yes weight loss must be slow to be lasting.

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FUSIONFITNESS3 1/16/2013 1:24AM

    I've also had my concerns about the TBL. Now The Revolution that is one show I have thorougly and completely appreciated. I watched it last year but is it still producing new shows this season. It isn't on any of the stations I get. The team had such a realistic and whole approach to lifestyle change.

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ILIKETOZUMBA 1/16/2013 12:05AM

    I've never seen the show, but from what I've read, I have to agree with you. The whole concept makes me rather uncomfortable.

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JBEAUFORD 1/15/2013 10:28PM

    Great post. I've watched it a little but never followed a season all the way through. If I'm parked on the couch watching TV I'm not moving, therefore becoming my own worst enemy.

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CHRIS3874 1/15/2013 9:28PM

    I am like some of the others - I watch it rarely and yeah it bugs me how the people get treated - what really bugs me is how they "vote" people off (OK maybe not really but you know what I mean) - I always wonder if the people they let go are the ones that needed it and would benefit the MOST from it .

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CATHYGETSFIT 1/15/2013 8:38PM

    I watch the show if I have nothing else to watch but I agree with everything you said. Plus, some of the things they make them do could really hurt them physically! It is a very unrealistic show and it does bother me that they don't address issues like you mentioned. If I watch it's only for pure entertainment.

I haven't heard of the Revolution. I'll have to see if I can get it on Hulu as I don't have a normal television anymore. I get everything off of the internet.

Great blog and well said! emoticon

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JINLYNN 1/15/2013 6:01PM

    Never been a fan of the show - if I want to watch a reality show about an overweight woman struggling to lose weight I can look in the mirror!

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1STATEOFDENIAL 1/15/2013 5:35PM

    A simple online search shows much more about the DANGEROUS nature of this show and what it portrays:




(After reading the last one, go back to the top and click 'next' for part 2.)

All I did was type in "biggest loser dehydration" into a search engine and scanned a few articles to find these. I've seen interviews/articles with some ex-contestants talking about the severe damage they did to their bodies by being on the show. This is REALITY TELEVISION, not REAL LIFE. It is scripted, it is edited, and it is FAKE. It is so much better to lose weight at 1-2 lbs a week on average over months than to lose 10+ lbs in a week. Whoever came up with this show, whoever keeps putting it on the air, and whoever made the choice that it is okay to RISK the LIVES of the contestants and the people at home trying to copy the work should all be charged with crimes.

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MACMOM57 1/15/2013 5:21PM

    Great blog. Havent really watch the show myself.

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MOTHER-NATURE 1/15/2013 4:35PM

    I have never and never will be a fan of the biggest loser show emoticon

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CINDYAST 1/15/2013 4:30PM

    AMEN!!! emoticon
I used to watch that show when it first came out, but I was so discouraged by it and asked myself "why can't I lose 20 pounds in a week?" And honestly I don't know if Ms. Michaels truly cares about the contestants or is in it for the exposure. It is after reality tv. and she now has (as well as the other "coaches") numerous workout dvd's, cookbooks, supplements, and other various items for sale. Nothing like a tv show to fill a bank account!
So Preach it sister! emoticon

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REFFIE1 1/15/2013 4:27PM

    I think that show the Revolution was cancelled but I did enjoy it when it was on. It had a much more reasonable approach. The Biggest Loser gives the false impression that exercise will lead to massive weight loss. Untrue, with out moderation in eating. Also, when would you live your life with all that exercise? I don't usually watch it but I did catch it when the person threw up and when Gillian kicked someone out of the room for not trying hard enough. Pure theatrics for ratings! Let's hope people don't take that show too literally, it may be a reality show but let's face it, it is a far cry from reality. Thanks for posting this. emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/15/2013 4:28:01 PM

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    I stopped watching this show for the same reasons you talk about. My weight loss has been slow but steady (about 3 lbs a month) and has added up to 37.5 pounds so far. I have left behind punishing and now focus on living for my health. I feel like I will eat like this for the rest of my life.

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