Thursday, February 11, 2010

Biggest Loser Review and Nutrition Tidbit; Flaxseeds

This post is dedicated to our dear friend Jillian Michael's, who was recently sued for selling a "weight loss supplement" that apparently doesn't work. You're kidding?? Way to go Jillian! I mean I knew you were backing a lot of completely ridiculous products, but this one takes the cake (oh wait, we aren't allowed to eat cake...sorry...we're just supposed to work our butts off, eat 500 calories a day, and take a weight loss supplement...RIGHT!).

Ok, I'm finished.

Biggest Loser Review

  • Bob's conversation with Koli. He was really motivational and reassuring. I do really like bob. I don't think he's extremely sexy, like some of you do ;)
  • Did you do the lunges during the commercial break? I did! I actually barely got a workout on Tuesday (remember the Tweets?) so it was something I actually enjoyed. They should do that more often (actually I already do it sometimes, and I learned some great tips for commercial workouts from Jess at Fit Chick in the City)
  • Did you ever use one of those slides with the booties, to workout? I was about 11 years old when those were popular. I remember my cousin had one and I used to "pretend" to use it (she was 15, so a bit more coordinated that I was!). I bet the contestant had some serious lactic acid buildup from doing that. It was a fun childhood flashback.
  • I think this show could be really useful for those who are trying to lose weight. Not because you necessarily learn a lot, but because it's a look into just how difficult it is to lose weight. These people clearly work extremely hard, and some lose only 4 pounds in a week (which doesn't seem like a whole lot considering their 6 hour daily workouts!) These days people expect miracles, but four pounds is about as much of a miracle as anyone will see in 1 week, without being incredibly dangerous. I hope people walk away from this show with motivation and more realistic expectations when it comes to losing weight.
  • Melissa was super mature. And, maybe she wasn't lying after all? Or do you think it was the traveling that caused her to gain the weight? I know I get a little constipated (the only time, ever) when I travel. Sorry. Graphic.
  • The one-on-one challenge at the end. Fantastic idea! After I Tivo'd through the weigh-in, that was a nice little twist.


  • Eat like an Olympian? Yeah right! They didn't eat like Olympians. Olympian's aren't trying to lose weight. They eat from "1600-8000 calories", Adam said. The Biggest Loser contestants eat much less than that. Liars!
  • Adam was a "nutritionist". Did you know that technically means nothing?? Anyone can call themselves a nutritionist! He probably had a degree of some sort in nutrition, but he wasn't an RD. I'm not saying he didn't know his stuff (clearly they wouldn't hire an idiot to help teach the Olympians about nutrition) but I wish they would have used an RD.
  • The meal for the speed skater was full of simple carbohydrates, and no fruits or vegetables. Plus, no lean meat. The weight lifter's meal was packed with fruits and vegetables. That doesn't seem right. It's not like a speed skater needs less vitamins and minerals, and it's not like speed skaters shouldn't be eating fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Wrong message to send.
  • Why don't they ever show the conestants eating during the day? The contestants make comments like, "Colorado was like a vacation, sometimes I didn't eat what I should have." Why don't they show that? People need to see reality, and this show needs to start giving suggestions for things like eating healthy while on vacation! This was a perfect opportunity, and they bombed.
  • When the girl (name??) was eying the spinning dessert showcase, and Bob said "I'd much rather you have a 5 calorie piece of Extra sugar free gum". LOL, thanks! There are so many alternative, and better options for a low calorie treat! What a joke.

Nutrition Tidbit

What are the benefits of flaxseed?

- Flaxseed oil provides a good source of the essential fatty acid Alpha Linolenic Acid (ALA; an Omega-3 precursor to the EPA and DHA found in fish oil). Ground flaxseed is best because the hard outer shell of flaxseeds have been shown to ineffectively break down in the body, therefore making it more difficult to absorb the Omega-3 found in the flaxseed oil.

- 2 T ground flaxseed provides about 2 grams of soluble fiber, and about 3.6 grams of insoluble fiber.

- Flaxseed contain lignans, which are phytonutrients that have been shown to have cancer protection properties.

What does research suggest?

While flaxseed contains many beneficial properties, research has only supported the efficacy of the claim that they may help relieve constipation (thanks to the high fiber content). Studies supporting the efficacy of the claim that flaxseeds may be able to improve blood lipids are mixed. Currently there are not enough studies supporting their use for cancer prevention, and reduced risk of heart disease and stroke .

Bottom Line: Despite the lack of appropriate evidence for the use of flaxseeds for several of its purported benefits, it's still a healthy food that would make a great addition to a well-balanced diet. Foods like flaxseed may be especially important for vegetarians and vegans, who don't eat fish or take fish oil, and who must rely on ALA for their EPA and DHA intake. Additionally, 1 T of ground flaxseed, or 1 tsp. of flaxseed oil, can provide you with the Adequate Intake of ALA for the day, which is 1.1 grams for women, and 1.6 grams for men. Other sources of ALA includes walnuts, fortified products (like my Smart Balance peanut butter!), soybeans, and canola oil.

Coming Up

Tomorrow Nick and I are celebrating Valentine's day! We can't do it on Sunday because he works, so tomorrow will have to do. He's making steak and lobster (umm, I'm scared...) so I'll be sure to post a recap on Sunday! Tomorrow I will be posting the winner of my "random giveaway" then on Saturday I'll post my new list of favorite supplements (not including Jillian's weight loss supplement) and sweeteners.

Have a nice night/day everyone, and thanks for reading :)


  1. I so agree with that ridiculous Olympian comment. Heck - you know olympians eat even more than that. My husband is in amazing shape and eats probably around 3000 cals a day - you know olympians need fuel!!! crazy BL!!

  2. I think I am jealous of whoever can eat 8000 calories a day and feel good :-)
    And I'm so happy the sugar free gum thing bothers other people! If you're obese and need a sweet, it's better than a lot of candy. But c'mon.
    Thanks for the flax info! I have a bag in my fridge, but I definitely get most/all my intake of it via Smart Balance Peanut Butter

  3. Wow, how much is she getting sued for!? She should've just stuck with promoting exercise and making healthy choices...

    I've been really digging flax lately. I've been putting it on my oatmeal almost every time I eat it. It leaves me full for awhile!

  4. agreed. all around.

    i'm so mad at jillian about these pills. and how come nobody has called her out on it yet in an interview? i need her to say something about it really bad hahahaha

    have fun at valentines day :) get chur romance on gurrrl

    pick me to win!!!!

  5. Speaking of eating like Olympians...I saw a commercial today for McDonalds saying it was where the athletes in the Olympics like to eat. I nearly fell off the treadmill on the spot. I REALLY DOUBT any athlete is eating at McDonalds!

  6. I was hoping someone would blog about Jillian's new lawsuit...crazy that she's selling that stuff, IMO.

    Have a great Friday!

  7. Flax Seeds are very good... but I have heard/read that over time our body builds tolerance to it and they are not as effective... Hemp Seeds though has as much plus more benefits and our body doesn't build a tolerance to it. I am going to dig up that article and send it your way

  8. Right on--there's only so long that you can go selling something that is complete quackery aka Jillian's diet pills! Love her workout DVDs, but getting into "diet" products/pills/powders/potions ... not a fan ... at ALL! I hear ya!

  9. So just 1 TBSP of flax is all the healthy fat I need in one day?

  10. People kill me. If you've had problems with weight your whole life you should KNOW a fucking pill won't suppress the hunger. Rant over.

    Hope you and Nick have a fantastic Valentine's Day celebration!

  11. Great post! And, I totally agree that Jillian should NOT have been promoting those pills. And I get in a tbsp. or more of ground flax seed a few times a week or more :-).

  12. Haha I get constipated after being on the plane too... how wierd!! I think i get bloated just being at the airport lol!
    I was wondering about flax seeds.. so you dont need all types of omega 3 found in fish etc.? Can a person get all their needs from flax alone?
    I know I'm not meant to take it because unhealthy bodies aren't very efficient in converting it in to EPA and DHA.. and it contains too much of something but i've forgotten what that is- doh!

  13. I don't follow The Biggest Loser, but you make some excellent points. Eating 500 calories a day and sweating your butt off, while curbing cravings with sugar-free gum... get real. But if athletes are eating 8000 calories a day Sign. Me. Up. :)

  14. I don't follow The Biggest Loser, but you make some excellent points. Eating 500 calories a day and sweating your butt off, while curbing cravings with sugar-free gum... get real. But if athletes are eating 8000 calories a day Sign. Me. Up. :)

  15. i havent watched it yet- im recording the replay of tuesdays episode tomorrow night while im at work!! I had to skip to your flaxseeds. I wrote about them too- they are such a good source of ALA and you can add ground to literally anything! so easy right. Thanks for answering all my questions!

  16. I thought the same thing about Melissa...maybe she wasn't lying after all! What is your hypothesis about how she gained this week?! Crazy!

  17. Have a great Valentine's celebration! Can't wait to read about the food... How great that Nick is cooking a fancy meal! :)

  18. yah~ I really like flax seed as an ingredient in oatmeal, baking goodies, it just a good source of fat and it makes the mixture thicker. :D and it's a great source of fiber to make my belly moving.
    have fun with Nick celebrating Valentine's, I'm all alone eating chocolates (yes, you guessed right, I ate all those chocolates because I was having an emotional break down and needed some comfort, but no worries, i'm ok now. )

  19. Oooh, now I'm extra-glad that I purchased a big bag of ground flax-seeds the other day! :-) Have you used flax in baking before? I havn't used it very much for baking, and I'm looking forward to experimenting a bit with muffins and cookies... :-)

    Happy Valentine's Day!! :-) Nick's feast sounds wonderful!! I hope y'all have a magical, perfect day! :-)

  20. I had the BL on TV for background noise and the only thing I paid attention to was the "do lunges during the commercial break." Great idea! Especially for a girl like me who spends entirely too much time on the computer! Getting up and moving every hour or so does a body good. Thanks for the reminder!

  21. I've only seen a couple episodes of the biggest loser but kept wondering why they don't show the food. They always stress "exercise and diet" but never show how they're helping contestants with their diet and how they're feeling about that!

  22. My mom started adding flax seed to things long before I ever heard about it. She had read that it helps decrease hot flashes. And it worked for her!

    I love flax seed, especially in yogurt and on top of oatmeal.

  23. i add flax seeds when baking muffins and to smoothies- for a little healthy boost!

    Way to go nick for being the chef for valentine's day!

  24. Joy Behar questioned Jillian about her products on her show and Jillian said they were all natural blah, blah, blah and Joy rolled her eyes. You need to watch her show. Joy is awesome.
    I've never like Jillian. She's good friends with Jackie Werner who's also been in trouble for shilling weight loss pills. They're both all about money.

  25. My DVR ate BL, so I can't comment on your review. I did, however, see that Jillian was getting sued. What can I say, she had that one coming?

    Hope you and Nick have a wonderful V-day celebration!

  26. I wondered that about Melissa too.

    I'm glad to know it only takes 1 tbsp of flax meal to get all the ALA I need!

  27. I agree with two of your points on BL:
    1. Throughout the seasons of BL, the contestants comment on their "struggles" while away from campus. Yet they rarely show food on the show. Maybe they should focus on that MAJOR side of losing weight more often.
    2. "I want a piece of cake" "How's about a piece of gum?" Yeah, like that's going to work. First of all, it creates a possible binge situation by totally removing foods from your diet! And a piece of gum will not fully satisfy your desire for sugar EVERY SINGLE TIME!

  28. Oh Jillian... I'm not even going to say anything.

    What I'm wondering (in reference to the flaxseeds) is how they compare to chia seeds...

  29. great BL likes and dislikes...

    and hey what's up with that jil jil rant, didn't your mom ever teach you "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all" hahaha I kid I kid...she f'ed up! she needs to stick to working out =)

  30. I missed BL! I always DVR it so I can fast forward through the commercials; however, it was not shown in New Orleans because the Saints had a parade to celebrate the Super Bowl win which aired instead. Sounds like I missed a good episode! Great info on flaxseed! Awesome that Nick is making you dinner... lobster is my favorite!!! Have a great weekend :)

  31. Did you hear Jillian's getting sued because of her "weight loss supplements"?

    Can't wait to see your favorites! :)

  32. I didnt know Jillian was being sued....I am not a fan of her anyway...
    I like Bob...I wonder if he is gay or straight though (not that that matters...but for girls that are interested it might be a problem :)...
    and gum ?...yeah...right...think i will EAT

  33. oh my gosh,totally not surprised! serves her right. Great tips, always! I'm still a fan of flax too :) Hope you have a nice dinner, we might be cooking in too, we'll see.

  34. I love flax seed, but have recently fallen for chia seeds. I've seen a few items suggestion that they could potentially have more health benefits. Do you know the difference or if one is better than the other. Thanks and Happy Valentine's Day!

  35. Thanks for the Biggest Loser recap - I haven't watched it yet, but will look for some of the things you mentioned.

    I wish I could eat flax seed - sadly, I'm allergic...

  36. haha that part with the extra sugar free gum advertising plug was so funny. i mean, seriously, telling someone who is craving a piece of chocolate cake to chew a stick of gum is so silly. i would much rather have seen a dark chocolate square mention or something along those lines!!!

    speaking of dark chocolate, happy belated valentines day!!

  37. I am so tired of all the plugging they do on that show. I basically have resorted to fast-forwarding through 1/3 of the show!

  38. Great post on flaxseeds! I love them as replacement eggs in baking as well.

  39. there are a lot of people who worried about their weight

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