WE'RE only two episodes into the new season of The Biggest Loser, but the show has already sparked controversy for casting a Buderim woman who weighs 78kg as one of the contestants desperate to lose weight.
While previous seasons of TBL featured heavily overweight and obese Australians with severe health problems, this year the contestants have what Channel 10 is calling "relatable" weight issues. The revamped format is less focused on the number on the scale, and more on body image, "self-love" and the impact weight and fitness has on overall health.
This year, the winner isn't just the contestant who loses the most weight.
The public will vote for a second winner based on who they think has had the "greatest transformation", both mentally and physically. The biggest loser title winner will take home $50,000 while the people's choice winner will take home $100,000.
The lightest contestant is 25-year-old Nikki, who at 78kg says she is so ashamed of her body that she goes to the beach wearing long pants and top, and refuses to let her partner see her naked.
It's worth noting that the second lightest contestant Jenny, a 60-year-old paramedic from Victoria, weighs 90kg. The heaviest contestant is Josh, 30, an excavator also from Victoria, who weighs 147kg.
Some viewers say it's "dangerous" to suggest that 78kg is an unhealthy weight, arguing Nikki is not heavy enough to be featured on the weight loss show.
But Nikki's trainer Libby Babet says even though Nikki isn't obese, she is in that "overweight category" of people who are looking to lose 10-15kg to improve their overall health.
"She wasn't healthy for her height," Ms Babet told news.com.au.
"We do break down [the contestants'] body fat scan and see where the fat is positioned on their bodies and what I think the public will see is that Nikki was quite unhealthy.
"She did have some issues going on and she is very short, she is not a tall girl. She is actually below the average in terms of height, and ultimately she's on TBL because she wants to lose weight.
"I can understand why people on social media think it is odd for them to see someone like Nikki on TBL, because she is representative of some women out there and a lot of women who perhaps wouldn't see themselves as needing to lose weight."
The average Australian woman weighs 71.1kg and is 161.8cm tall, according to the most recent ABS data, while the average Aussie bloke weighs 85.9kg and is 175.6cm tall.
That same data tells us that two in three (62.8 per cent) Australian adults are overweight or obese. Only 35.5 per cent of us are in a normal weight range, while 1.7 per cent are underweight.
Using that ABS data, the average Australian woman has a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 27.2, which classifies her as overweight. A normal BMI is somewhere between 18 and 25.
Ms Babet says if viewers feel uncomfortable about seeing a 78kg woman on a weight loss show, they should examine why that makes them feel uneasy.
"I actually kind of don't mind if people watch and get a little bit uncomfortable, because in my experience, the times when you create the greatest changes are times when you go into a little bit of an uncomfortable place," she said.
"If there is one thing I would encourage people to do, it is if they are looking at Nikki and feeling uncomfortable, maybe look at why they are feeling uncomfortable? Ask yourself, 'Is it because I feel like I should get out there and do a bit more to make myself feel better? Is this just a little nudge to make myself a little healthier?' If so, that's a positive thing."
While people who are 10-15kg overweight might not look "big", that extra weight can still carry a range of negative health issues, Babet says.
"You can experience nutrient deficiency, fatigue, exhaustion, poor hormonal health, higher rates of depression and anxiety, high blood pressure, high cholesterol. You can start to develop a fatty liver and the kind of fat that sits around your organs," she said.
"You might not be ready to have a heart attack, but you might be feeling anxious, sluggish, tired, exhausted, fatigue, emotional, lose the regularity of your cycle. That comes from putting on fat in unhealthy places and when it happens when you're not moving enough."
Ms Babet is eager to point out that 78kg can look different on different people.
"To be really clear, there are a lot of girls out there who are a lot taller than Nikki ... 78kg can look very different on someone who is 180cm," she said, while adding that Nikki was clearly very unhappy at her starting weight.
"We didn't sit Nikki down and ask her to apply. She applied because she didn't feel good about herself.
"From my experience, women who are 40kg overweight can feel exactly the same way about themselves as women who are 10-15kg or 20kg overweight. It's not about the number on the scales," she said.
The Biggest Loser: Transformed airs Monday - Thursday at 7.30pm and on Sunday night at 7pm.
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