The Weight Loss Challenge – A Long Term Solution or a Quick Fix?

 In Weight Loss

The Biggest Loser reality series made the weight loss challenge a popular choice for those who want to lose weight. Weight loss challenges popped up all over the country. There were workplace challenges and even whole towns getting involved and setting up their own weight loss challenges. Yet after the lights went down and the confetti was swept up after the show’s final season, it seems that in many cases, these challenges were more of a quick fix rather than a long-term solution. The actual reality is that a large percentage of the contestants regained some or all of the weight they lost. 

In fact, scientific studies indicated that the contestants’ metabolism slowed after losing weight. According to an article in the New York Times in May of 2016, “‘You can’t get away from a basic biological reality … as long as you are below your initial weight, your body is going to try to get you back.” While it seems that biology played part in the contests struggle to keep the weight off, there are also other factors involved. Losing weight isn’t just about your metabolism, it’s about the choices you make every day – what you choose to eat and how you choose to exercise. While it may have been easy to make those choices and achieve large decreases on the scale week after week in the controlled environment of the Biggest Loser, it can be much more difficult in everyday life.

Weight Loss Challenge Benefits

Despite the fact that many of the Biggest Loser contestants regained some or all the weight, that doesn’t mean there aren’t any benefits to participating in your local weight loss challenge. If conducted in the spirit of friendly completion, these challenges are often a great source of motivation and support. If you are just beginning your weight loss journey, participating in a weight loss challenge can be a great way to kick start that journey. The key is to have a plan in place for when the challenge ends and remember – winning is great, but as long as you’ve taken a couple of steps toward your weight loss goal, the challenge was a success.

Long Term Weight Loss

Constant yo-yo dieting and weight fluctuation with fad diets won’t help you achieve your long term weight loss goals. In fact, it can actually have a negative impact on your health, even increasing your risk for diabetes and heart disease. Doctors and medical professionals have long recommended slow, steady weight loss and adopting a healthy lifestyle as the best way to successfully achieve and maintain a healthy weight. 

The primary goal of the Biggest Loser was for contestants to lose weight. That was their only responsibility during the thirty-week program, leaving them plenty of time to cook healthy meals, get the proper amount of sleep and exercise at least four hours a day. Let’s be realistic. Who has time for all of that between work, raising a family and everyday responsibilities? Considering its intensity and the post-program weight gain of many of the Biggest Loser participants, the results are similar to that of a fad diet – a quick fix without long term success. 

Weight Loss Success

The key to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight loss isn’t a weight loss challenge or the latest fad diet. Making healthy lifestyle changes and following a nutrient-dense, balanced diet is the best way to lose weight and keep it off. This not only allows you to lose weight without risking your health but it will also help you adopt healthy eating habits. Slow, steady weight loss may also minimize the impact on your metabolism. 

If you have a significant amount of weight to lose and have tried to lose it on your own unsuccessfully, it might be time to consider a supervised medical weight loss program. Permanent lifestyle changes are key to successful long-term weight loss. As with any change, the first step is the hardest part. At Vive Medical Weight Loss, that first step starts at your consultation. Dr. Pinto’s philosophy is to give you the jumpstart you need to achieve and then maintain a healthy weight. Using evidence-based weight loss programs, your success is inevitable. Contact us today and we can take that first step together.


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