In its new season, the reality television show “The Biggest Loser” is focusing on three teenagers. The intention is to inspire families, teenagers and children to start getting more active in everyday life. This is one of the best ideas I have ever heard coming from a reality television show.
According to the Central Intelligence Agency, the United States currently holds the sixth highest obesity rate in the world.
Let’s face it: In America, we certainly love our sweets and fast food and we have a reputation for being lazy. Technology has taken its toll on us, with more children inside playing video games than going outside and playing tag.
But the movement to become more active has garnered some harsh criticism. According to The Los Angeles Times, critics are claiming that a show like “The Biggest Loser” is no place for young participants due to the heavy workouts, strict diets and weigh-ins right in front of an audience.
Who would allow children to be publically humiliated on television? How could they push teenagers so hard?
The show’s 14th season premiere, which aired Jan. 6, showed a major
difference in the treatment of the adults and the younger participants. The challenges involved fun obstacle courses rather than tough workouts. It was about losing weight and having fun doing it, as opposed to the harsh workouts the adult contestants receive.
Shows like “The Biggest Loser” can help to inspire obese teenagers and children who may be watching to become more active and eat healthy. Such a show can inspire teenagers and children in a number of ways. It gives them guidelines on how to accomplish the huge goal of losing weight and it shows them how much fun physical activity can be.
I think more shows should embrace helping our country’s obesity rate the way “The Biggest Loser” has. If more kids are inspired to get active, our country’s high obesity rate could go down.
Some may be appalled that this show is seemingly encouraging children to form the mindset that the skinnier they are, the better. Some may complain that the name of the show itself will hurt the egos of the young contestants.
But it’s a good thing that a popular television show is devoted to teaching kids how to be healthy and active. I can only hope to see more seasons battling the problem of youth obesity. And maybe other shows will start to follow in the footsteps of “The Biggest Loser.”
The major problem lies not in what society thinks, but in the health issues obesity brings. In the long run, the inspiration such a show provides outweighs the negativity surrounding it. If a show like this is going to teach children how to be healthy, how could you disagree?
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