Biggest Loser Controversy: Kai Hibbard Speaks OutPosted on Jun 23rd 2010 2:00PM by Emily Shetler
"The only thing making it a controversy is that 'The Biggest Loser' says I can't talk about it," said Hibbard. "If they weren't doing things that they think are wrong, why bar me from talking? But I'm not angry at the show. I'm angry at myself, that I didn't think that I was worth more than being treated that way. Dehydrate every week to weigh in, eat less than 1,200 calories, take in no electrolytes? No, no, no! I'm worth more than that."
But it's not just Hibbard who has been voicing concerns about the weight loss methods used in "The Biggest Loser." Ryan Benson, the winner of Season One, said that he dehydrated himself so severely he was urinating blood. Jillian Michaels, the trainer who has become the face of "The Biggest Loser," voiced concerns similar to Hibbard. In an interview with Star magazine, Michaels said, "Oh absolutely! There is a lot of game playing that goes on. 'The Biggest Loser' is a game show. It is what it is."
Hibbard still looks fabulous in her finale cocktail dress, three years and one baby later. But her thinner outside belies her internal struggle. "Internally, I'm very sick from it, even if on the outside, I look better," she said. "I can't prove that I was healthier at over 200 pounds. But my gut tells me I was a lot healthier before, whether I looked it or not."
So why come forward now, three years later? "I have a responsibility to tell the truth. I wasn't losing 12 pounds a week. When someone who's watching the show is losing a pound or two a week, she should know that she's doing an amazing job."
We contacted NBC for a reaction to Hibbard's allegations, and they issued the following statement: "Contestants on 'The Biggest Loser' are closely monitored and medically supervised. The consistent health transformations of over 200 contestants through nine seasons of the program speak for themselves."
Hibbard said that she would be happy to be quiet if she knew that "The Biggest Loser" now treated their contestants fairly and portrayed the results in a truthful way. "I would shut up and go away if I knew for a fact that they are now treating contestants well, both in terms of mental health and physical health, and they were doing on that ranch what they are telling the American public they are doing."
Read more of our coverage of "The Biggest Loser."