the biggest loser finale: this time was too much

The Biggest Loser finale…I just watched it. I’ve got some words to get out.

They took it too far.


Rachel, the season’s winner, became relatively emaciated for the sake of winning the competition. At about a 5’4″ frame, she went from 260 pounds down to…105.

105 pounds.

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photo: Us Weekly

At these finales they shellack the contestants with body tanner and makeup, undoubtedly airbrushing on some newly-sculpted muscles. But there was no hiding this–Rachel was thin. Her face was sunken in. She also just seemed out of it, not knowing that she won as it was announced. I was actually a bit worried she might pass out with all the commotion, inevitable dehydration, and (most likely) low blood sugar. I think it’s pretty apparent that these contestants go to total extremes towards the end. It’s a shame it has to go to that.

But to play the devil’s advocate, I get where Rachel was coming from. $250,000 gets you far in life. It pays off debts. It buys you a home. It sends kids to college. It can buy you a lot of swanky vacations. A large sum of money isn’t something that should be ignored.

Imagine any other competition for the prize of $250,000–don’t you think people would go totally barbaric if they had a chance of winning? Just think of the people trampling each other at Walmart on Black Friday!

If I was in her position, pretty much smelling a victory, I know I’d push myself to go the distance. Where The Biggest Loser sucks is that it’s based off body percentage lost, so the lower the weight, the better. Sorry, but I’m not going to lie–if I had to lose as much weight as possible, I wouldn’t care about the health if it was a quick timeframe and I could build my weight back up after the show. Isn’t that what competitive bodybuilders do to cut fat? Push themselves to the limits and then recover afterward? Is this any different?

My one last rant bullet point is that I think the finger should really be pointed at NBC. I’m sure that the producers call each finalist contestant and check in to make sure that weight is being lost and low numbers are on the horizon for the finale. The pressure from them must be palpable. Hell yeah I’d feel that pressure and go to extremes to satisfy everyone behind the show. Anything for ratings, right? What makes me sad is that NBC is only gaining from this debacle, they’re getting what they want–people talking about the show.

I wonder if this catastrophe will translate into higher ratings for the next season…and if so, that makes it even more sad.

Hopefully Rachel hasn’t been too negatively impacted and still has somewhat of a decent relationship with food. It would be a shame for The Biggest Loser contestants to go from one kind of eating disorder to another. That’s clearly not the intended point of the show.

What are your thoughts on this? Does this show scare you as much as it scares me? What really is the message NBC is sending to America?

Other responses that I’m loving:

Rachel Frederickson’s “Biggest Loser” Win Made Me Uncomfortable Because of My Eating Disorder Past

Biggest Loser Finale: Too Much?

Where The Biggest Loser and Rachel Frederickson Went Wrong

photo credit: Us Weekly