Winners of The Biggest Loser, the NBC reality show in which contestants compete to lose massive amounts of weight, tend to pack the pounds back on after the cameras turn off, a new study in the journal Obesity reports.
The research found that just one of the fourteen contestants who took part in the series maintained their weight loss since shedding the stones in 2009 and one is heavier than when he signed up to the programme.
The New York Times reports that Sean Algaier weighed 30 stone 10lb before taking part in the show and dropped to 20 stone 1lb after following the intensive programme. However, he now weighs two stone more than when he started.
Fellow contestant Daniel Cahill shed 17 stone throughout the programme and its aftermath and dropped to 13 stone 9lbs. However, he now weighs 20 stone 1lb.
The research conducted by metabolism expert Kevin Hall suggests that the contestant’ metabolisms were negatively impacted by the show.
The findings published in the journal Obesity found that the contestants had healthy metabolisms prior to the show, but now they have slowed dramatically.
Mr Cahill has to eat 800 calories a day less than the average man as anything more turns to fat.
Michael Schwartz, a professor of medicine at the University of Washington told the New York Times that the findings were significant.
“The key point is that you can be on TV, you can lose enormous amounts of weight, you can go on for six years, but you can’t get away from a basic biological reality,” he said.
“As long as you are below your initial weight, your body is going to try to get you back.”