The Biggest Loser is a very popular television show that has taken the world by storm. This reality TV show follows a group of overweight people on their fat loss journey over a period of weeks and finally the person who has lost the most weight and shown the most improvement, wins a whopping cash prize.
Accurate portrayal? Not entirely. Entertaining? Most definitely.
The show can be inspiring, funny, sad and dramatic at times. It’s entertainment at its best. However, the show creates unrealistic expectations and does not give a clear picture of the real hard truth about weight loss.
Let’s look at the advantages of The Biggest Loser.
One benefit is the competitive factor. Everyone wants to do better than the rest. The cash prize makes things a lot more serious. You are definitely going to think twice about eating an extra muffin if you stand to lose a million dollars.
There is also a feeling of support amongst your peer group. The team spirit will help to motivate them when they are down. Since it’s two groups competing against each other, the group is only as strong as its weakest link. So, it is in everyone’s best interest to keep their teammates motivated.
The show also makes the contestants imbibe the values of hard work and sacrifice. It gives viewers who are similarly obese and unhealthy, hope and inspiration. When they see other overweight people dropping the pounds and struggling, it makes them realize that they too can do it. It is not some far-fetched goal that is beyond reach. It can be attained at the price of hard work and discipline.
Now let’s examine the cons of this show.
First and foremost, it creates false expectations. Seriously obese people are able to lose weight a lot faster than a slightly overweight person. So, while the obese guy may lose 6 pounds a week, it just may not be possible for someone who weighs much lesser to lose as much weight in as short a time. This can be disappointing to the viewer at home who does not realize this.
The show also promotes overtraining. They train the contestants for 4 hours or more daily. This will take a severe toll on the body and is not recommended. Overtraining leads to injury, a burnt out nervous system and makes people dread exercise. You want to go the slow and steady route when it comes to losing weight.
Another point to note is that weight loss does not mean a good body composition. You want more lean muscle mass and less body fat. Weighing yourself on the scale does not show if you have lost body fat or muscle. This is one of the cons of the show. It only uses the numbers on the giant weighing scale.
Then we also have contestants who adopt very unhealthy practices just to lose those extra pounds to win the competition. Contestants who won have come out and admitted that they did not eat for days and dehydrated themselves to the point they were ‘peeing blood’ (YIKES!).
The viewer at home is unaware of all these things that go on behind the camera. They expect typical results for themselves and are disappointed when they do not achieve the same results as the people on the show.
You need to realize that it is just a TV show. Take it with a pinch of salt. The only way you can lose weight and keep it off successfully is to adopt a progressive training program and a highly effective and easy to follow diet system (I STRONGLY recommend you consider this program HERE). Make exercise a part of your lifestyle. Don’t rush things and expect miracles. You will achieve your goals in good time if you stay the course.