I have been watching The Biggest Loser for years. I love watching the transformations that happen on the show. People who thought that they were hopeless, stuck and destined to be miserable get to the root of their issues and come out on the other side armed with tools to live a healthy life.
As I was watching the finale last night, I saw something that made my heart drop. As the final member of the final three stepped out on stage, it was immediately clear that she had crossed over the line. Rachel didn’t look healthy and trim, she looked aged and dangerously thin. I say “dangerously thin” because while she may only be a few pounds underweight now, it is what is going on in her head that is the real danger. From what I can find online, Rachel is 5’4” and 105 pounds. The minimum someone her height should weigh is 108 pounds. The nature of the show, the winner having the largest percentage of weight loss, is such that the only way Rachel could win against the two other finalists, and the weight they lost, is to lose the amount of weight she lost and left her weighing only 105 pounds.
If you watched, and saw the look on all three trainers faces, you know they were shocked at how Rachel looked, too. Where does the line get drawn? How much is too much? Should the winner be ineligible if they are underweight at the finale?
I am not judging Rachel, I am genuinely concerned. Having struggled with anorexia for as long as I have, I understand how easy it is to fall into the patterns that can quickly turn dangerous. Just one more pound and I’ll stop. Just another mile and it’ll be enough. Just one more.