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HHS HealthBeat (November 26, 2012)

After “The Biggest Loser”

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Physical Activity Guidelines

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

To most of us, “The Biggest Loser” is a TV show. To Kevin Hall, it’s also a research project. The scientist at the National Institutes of Health saw the weight loss program as a way to see what happens when really big people diet and exercise a huge amount to lose a lot of weight.

The TV program doesn’t tell us what happens after the show ends. So Hall used a computer model to project it. He says the biggest losers wouldn’t need a monster regimen to keep the weight under control:

“They would have to have about a 20 percent calorie cut from where they started, with about 20 minutes a day of vigorous exercise.”

And he says this is doable for a lot of people – including those not on the show.

The study is in the journal Obesity.

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HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: November 26, 2012