We’ve all been caught up in the dramatic weight-loss transformations of the Biggest Loser contestants at some point. But do you ever wonder what happens to the weight when the filming stops?
Well, an explosive study published earlier this year reveals all. After tracking the fate of 14 US contestants in the six years following the show’s finale, researchers found that all but one has regained most of the weight they had lost on the show. And sadly, four now weigh more than they did before going on the show.
But the bad news doesn’t end there. What’s most concerning is that, on average, the contestants’ metabolism has slowed, so they now burn 2000kJ (500cal) per day less than other people of the same weight. A slower metabolism means that losing weight will now be harder than ever for them, and that they’ll put on weight more easily than before.
This is a sobering example of the harmful effects of crash dieting. Dramatically restricting calories sends the body into the same protective mode it used when our ancestors were faced with starvation: it starts to hold onto fat stores because it doesn’t know when the next time food will be available. As a result, your metabolism slows down.
At Healthy Food Guide magazine, we always promote gradual and steady weight loss through a combination of a healthy diet and regular exercise. Not only do health experts agree that this is a safe way to lose weight, but it also proves to be sustainable in the long term.
You’ll learn more about your metabolism, as well as effective ways to burn more kilojoules, in the October issue of Healthy Food Guide magazine.