‘Biggest Loser’ contestant: Show a ‘fat-shaming disaster’

20 Jan 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

‘Biggest Loser’ winner Kai Hibbard reveals shocking show secrets.

The show, in which obese contestants compete to lose the most weight, is “a fat-shaming disaster that I’m embarrassed to have participated in,” she told the New York Post. “The whole f***king show is a fat-shaming disaster,” she told Page Six. “You just think you’re so lucky to be there that you don’t think to question or complain about anything.” Hibbard said she and other contestants were made to sing contracts giving away their rights to their storylines on the show and forbidding them to speak poorly of the NBC reality show.

She might have lost 121lbs during her 2006 stint on The Biggest Loser, but former contestant claims that the television show’s tactics are both emotionally abusive and physically dangerous.SHE had always struggled with her weight, but in January of 2006, Kai Hibbard was in real trouble: At just 26 years old, her 5-foot-6 frame carried 120kg.“I know that one of the contestants’ children became very ill and was in the ICU,” she said. “He was allowed to talk to his family — but he didn’t want to leave, because the show would have been done with him… There was no easing into it. The trainers, she said, “would say things to contestants like, ‘You’re going die before your children grow up.’ ‘You’re going to die, just like your mother.’ ‘We’ve picked out your fat-person coffin’ — that was in a text message. About a year ago, we posted a piece questioning a slew of techniques employed by the show, from the insanely harsh training schedules to the encouragement of radical weight-loss each and every week, to the nutritionally-poor foods it promotes.

One production assistant told a contestant to take up smoking because it would cut her appetite in half.” Hartsock wed Chris Siegfried in Palos Verdes, California, on Sunday, a rep for the couple told Us Weekly. Shortly thereafter, the show weathered another round of criticism when winner Rachel Frederickson went from 260 pounds to a very-tiny 105 pounds in just a matter of months. And according to Hibbard, trainers enjoyed seeing contestants collapse mentally and physically. “They’d get a sick pleasure out of it,” she said. “They’d say, ‘It’s because you’re fat.

An anonymous contestant also said she believes they took her laptop to bug it. “The camera light on my MacBook would sometimes come on when I hadn’t checked in,” she said about the computer when she got it back from a production assistant. “It was like Big Brother was always watching you.” The other contestant claimed her first workout at the ranch lasted four hours. “My feet were bleeding through my shoes for the first three weeks,” she said. My short-term memory still sucks.” Hibbard, lost 121 pounds to end up at 144, put weight back on after the show but she declined to reveal how much. And now a different contestant, Kai Hibbard, who competed on season three of the show, is saying it might be worse than we all suspected: According to her claims, the contestants’ physical and mental health are often sacrificed on the alter of ratings and sponsorships. But despite being held up as a weight loss role model she feels the need to let people know the brutal truth behind shedding those pounds. “If I’m going to walk around collecting accolades, I also have a responsibility (to tell the truth),” she says. “There’s a moral and ethical question here when you take people who are morbidly obese and work them out to the point where they vomit, all because it makes for good TV.”

Attorneys for the Beastie Boys are asking a New York court to order the maker of Monster Energy drink to pay almost $2.5million in legal fees to cover their costs in a copyright violation case. I was only sleeping three hours a night.” To this day Hibbard says she suffers irregular periods and hair loss. “My thyroid, which I never had problems with, is now crap,” she added. Look at all the fat you have on you.’ And that was our fault, so this was our punishment.” Still the network defended the show, telling the Post “Our contestants are closely monitored and medically supervised.

The show rakes in about $100 million annually in ad sales, with ancillary products such as cookbooks, DVDs, protein powder, clothing, video games and branded weight-loss camps bringing in tens more millions of dollars per year. And in order to bring in the radical weekly weight-loss numbers, Hibbard claims the contestants were ingesting significantly less than 1,000 calories a day, mostly from heavily processed foods provided by sponsors: Stuff like Kraft fat-free cheese, Rockstar Energy Drinks and Jell-O. At the end of her season, Hibbard had lost a whopping 121 pounds, but don’t get it twisted: All that weight loss doesn’t necessarily mean she was healthy. Rachel’s emaciated appearance stirred rumors she was suffering from the eating disorders anorexia or bulimia, and drew alarmed reactions from both trainers Jillian Michaels and her colleague, Bob Harper. Jillian later blamed Dolvett Quince (Frederickson’s trainer), for the anorexia controversy, saying he didn’t properly supervise Rachel to ensure she lost weight in a healthy manner.

After an initial winnowing process, 14 of 50 finalists are taken to “the ranch,” where they live, work out and suffer in seclusion. (The remaining 36 are sent home to lose weight on their own, and return later in the season.) Those who remain, Hibbard says, are not allowed to call home. “You might give away show secrets,” she says. Frederickson’s super-skinny appearance caused outrage among “Biggest Loser” fans, who said selecting someone who looks unhealthy as the winner sends the wrong message. You’ll lose your last chance to save your life.’ ” “Safe weight loss is one to two pounds per week, and most people find that hard,” says Lynn Darby, a professor of exercise science at Bowling Green State University. “If you reduce your calories to less than 800-1,000 a day, your metabolism will shut down.

And 2014’s Biggest Loser, Rachel Frederickson, became the first winner to generate concern that she had lost too much weight, dropping 70kg in months. She appeared on the cover of People with the headline “Too Thin, Too Fast?” Frederickson (5-foot-4, 47kg) admitted to working out four times a day, and within one month of the finale had gained back nine kg. “Just calorie restriction in and of itself has to be supervised,” Darby says. “I mean, people die. It’s just not safe.” “One contestant had a torn calf muscle and bursitis in her knees,” Hibbard says. “The doctor told her, ‘You need to rest.’ She said, ‘Production told me I can’t rest.’ At one point after that, production ordered her to run, and she said, ‘I can’t.’ She was seriously injured. But they edited her to make her look lazy and bitchy and combative.” Hibbard’s own health declined dramatically. “My hair was falling out,” she says. “My period stopped. When a bell went off, they had to run neck-and-neck like animals, picking up sacks filled with their lost weight on the way. “I walked,” she says.

It was her minor form of protest. “They edited it to look like I was lazy,” she says, “but I wasn’t participating because it was humiliating.” When Hibbard got home, her best friend and boyfriend took her straight to the doctor. “She said I had such severe shin splints that she didn’t know how I was still walking,” Hibbard says.

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