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Biggest Loser = Child Abuse?

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Old 01-01-2013, 09:20 PM   #1
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Default Biggest Loser = Child Abuse?

So does anyone have any thoughts on Season 14 of The Biggest Loser having 3 kids on the cast this season? I read there will be two children age thirteen and one child age sixteen.

Does anyone think that children this age should be subjected to the type of in your face training these adults are put through? What do you think about these three teens being on The Biggest Loser? Would you allow your child to do the same thing?
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Old 01-01-2013, 09:21 PM   #2
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I don't think adults should be subjected to this kind of training.
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Old 01-01-2013, 09:26 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Bellamack View Post
I don't think adults should be subjected to this kind of training.
This!
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Old 01-01-2013, 09:39 PM   #4
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Well adults sign up for it willingly, so I don't care about them doing the training. I don't think the kids should be involved with a weight loss competition. I would prefer for them to learn about healthy eating and weight, not eating asparagus for a week to try to make weight.
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Old 01-01-2013, 09:46 PM   #5
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Yeah, that entire show is abusive and exploitative. No adult or kid should be on that show.
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Old 01-01-2013, 11:25 PM   #6
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The teens are not participating the way the adults do.

They are training primarily at home, with an emphasis on getting them involved with more healthy activities (dance classes, softball), not necessarily on the big intense Biggest Loser style workouts. They will be doing some ranch workouts, but not to the level the adults do.

They are not up for elimination.

Their weigh-ins will not be filmed.

Based on interviews with Jillian Michaels and her podcast, her goal with the teenagers is to encourage them to be healthy and active, not to lose the most weight whatever the cost.

It would be a BAD idea to incorporate teens into the same workouts, weigh ins, and eliminations as the adult competitors. But I think they are taking a different angle, and hopefully, it will shine a spotlight on child obesity without crossing the line.
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Old 01-01-2013, 11:37 PM   #7
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The whole concept of the show is counter productive.

I'll sum it up... they find the biggest people they can who are still healthy enough to survive the show so that the results will be as drastic as they can get. They foster an unrealistic belief that anyone can lose weight quickly if they just work hard enough .... with the undertone that if you are fat then you must be lazy.
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Old 01-01-2013, 11:52 PM   #8
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Old 01-02-2013, 07:35 AM   #9
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Kids are a completely different story and I think - from what I've read - that they are handling this season properly. Regarding adults, I'm going to risk a barrage of "dislikes" here and say I don't think the program is bad or misleading.

We sometimes (many times) fool ourselves into thinking that as long as we can get around, things are OK. We are part of a society that wants no one to be offended, wants everyone to get an award for participating, wants everyone to feel they have done equally well just because they showed up, and many times wants to blame failure on "whatever" reason is handy. This is not real life and is the reason many of us have problems coping as adults.

The diets and workouts on Biggest Loser are extreme, yes. But look at the diet of someone who has had surgery to lose weight. It's extreme, too. Look at the diet and workout of a pro football player or a prize fighter. They are also extreme. The diet and workout regime on Biggest Loser are no different. They are extreme for a reason. To get a participant into the best shape possible in the allotted time. Winning losses are based on percentages, not actual weight - that's fair. Diet is based on healthy eating - that's a good lifestyle change. Exercise is strenuous, but if it isn't, you don't know what you're capable of and coast along. The fact that many of the participants continue to lose and get healthier after leaving the competition is evidence that success can be achieved at home. Yes, there is a potential monetary reward. But guidelines for continuing on your own are in place and success is possible outside of the show.

I think we have to look at Biggest Loser for what it is - a reality show that puts some of our population who may be in great danger of physical harm and may be ridiculed for their lifestyle on the right track. If there is exploitation, it is consensual. If there is huge failure after the show is over, then that participant wasn't serious about what they were doing in the first place. We make too many excuses for our condition. I was fat because I ate too much of the wrong foods. Period. Everyone's reasons are different, but that's the bottom line for almost anyone who is obese. We take drastic measures to attack cancer and other diseases. We need to take drastic measures to attack obesity. I think once you think of it in the same context as disease, extreme solutions make more sense.

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Old 01-02-2013, 03:15 PM   #10
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Lin, I couldn't have said it better myself!

Mandalinn, thanks for setting the record straight!
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Old 01-02-2013, 08:24 PM   #11
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Lin, you make some really good points. I've never watched the show so I may be off base, but my biggest objection to it is that it seems to perpetuate the myth that everyone can loss 2-5 pounds a week if they try hard enough. And that's true for seriously heavy people (I myself lost 10 pounds a month for 6 months, going from 225 to 165) but not for people who want to lose 10-20 pounds.

Mandalinn, I read a short interview with Jillian Michaels and she seems to be highly aware of the difference between the kids and the adults she works with.
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Old 01-03-2013, 01:06 PM   #12
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I love the show (for the most part) so i may be biased but I don't think it perpetuates the myth that anyone can lose 2-5 pounds a week because they are dealing with seriously heavy people and insane workout schedules. Of course, I go into watching it with the attitude that it's there for stories and struggles and ultimately, inspiration.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:27 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Steph7409 View Post
Lin, you make some really good points. I've never watched the show so I may be off base, but my biggest objection to it is that it seems to perpetuate the myth that everyone can loss 2-5 pounds a week if they try hard enough. And that's true for seriously heavy people (I myself lost 10 pounds a month for 6 months, going from 225 to 165) but not for people who want to lose 10-20 pounds.
Now, I've only see a maybe two seasons? But I actually think the show does a good job showing how when people are within 20-40lbs of goal, its really hard to get a even a 2lbs/week loss when in the beginning they were getting a double digit loss a week.
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:41 PM   #14
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I'm one of those who usually finds The Biggest Loser personally inspiring. I know that I'm not devoting hours and hours a day to exercise, and I don't expect to match their results. But seeing what they can do - people who often start off heavier and much more incapacitated than I am - makes me want to push myself that little bit extra when it comes to working out, and helps me remember to make the choices i want to make when it comes to eating.

Knowing that the new season is starting is actually part of what got me off my butt to come back here and commit to getting myself back on track. I've always used Sundays as my WI day, so that is my plan for my re-start.

As for the kids, if the way they are handled is as described upthread, then I think it's ok. I would be unlikely to put my own child on (if he were overweight) but then again, I wouldn't go on myself. Not for the way things were done, but just because I wouldn't choose to share that journey on TV. If I could do a BL program privately (and if I could afford to not work that whole time! lol!), I'd be all over it!
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Old 01-03-2013, 03:56 PM   #15
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They foster an unrealistic belief that anyone can lose weight quickly if they just work hard enough .... with the undertone that if you are fat then you must be lazy.
. Why is this unrealistic? To be fair, a vast majority of fat people ARE fat because they're lazy or undisciplined. I know we are supposed to absolve everyone of personal responsibility, etc., but if you can't accept personal responsibility, then you lack the ability to change your situation. I refuse to do or believe that.
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