The Checkup: Doc Says ‘Biggest Loser’ Weight Loss Plan Works

Is NBC's Biggest Loser better than weight-loss surgery in treating obesity? The show's resident MD says yes.

• What does it take for a Biggest Loser contestant to drop all that weight in a few short months? A fitness and nutrition regimen that includes an hour each of intense resistance exercise and intense aerobic exercise and two hours of moderate aerobic activity every day, plus a calorie intake of between 1,600 to 2,000 calories for men and 1,000 to 1,400 for women, reports the Los Angeles Times. The NBC show’s medical director, Dr. Robert Huizenga, reported to a group of colleagues late last week that his program is more effective than bariatric surgery. Citing data from 35 of the show’s contestants from seasons 11, 12 and 13, Huizenga said within five weeks the show’s contestants showed “absolutely unprecedented” declines in metabolic dysfunction and that “significant improvements in subjects’ fasting glucose levels, insulin levels and adiponectin levels were evident  at the end of their first week in the rigorous program, and persisted throughout an assessment period of 10 months.” Check out more details on the doctor’s reported successes over at, but they raise some questions: Is 10 months enough time to evaluate the success of a dramatic weight loss program? Is Dr. Huizenga that most, um, unbiased source of this news? Share your thoughts in the comments.

• How do you think you’d look after surgery to have 60 percent of your lung removed? I can guarantee I wouldn’t look as lovely as 28-year-old Army wife Rachel, whom the internet has dubbed “ridiculously photogenic surgery girl.”

• Hey lunch ladies, don’t mess with nine-year-old food bloggers armed with a camera, Food-o-Meter and an endorsement from Jamie Oliver.