Learn How to Cook and What to Eat to Lose Weight With These TV Divas


These two British television shows help you eat right, be healthy and lose weight all without giving up your favorite foods.

In North America, there is The Biggest Loser – a show where overweight people go through a dieting Boot Camp, with intense exercise sessions led by tough trainers and an extreme makeover in their nutrition. The participants get weighed in every week and eventually the team votes out one of the members who lost the least amount of weight that week. While watching The Biggest Loser may not necessarily make you want to jump out of your couch to go get fit and lose some weight, these shows from across the pond take a more personalized and accessible approach to a healthy weight loss.

Cook Yourself Thin – What Is It

  • Channel 4 (UK), W Network & Viva (Canada)
  • Hosts: Gizzi, Harry, Sophie and Sal, cooks who love to eat healthy but are not willing to forgo taste.

In every episode, the hosts help someone who needs to lose a few pounds but loves their food. Often times these participants are too busy to make their own food, so they rely on take-outs and ready made meals. Most participants are long-time dieters, but have never managed to stick to one diet because of their love for certain forbidden foods. Gizzi, Harry, Sophie and Sal find out the goals of the participant and their guilty pleasures in order to create lower-calorie alternatives to their favorite foods. After a few weeks following the hosts’ recipes, literally “cooking themselves thin,” the participants often shed a few pounds.

How Will Cook Yourself Thin Help Weight Loss

This show provides viewers with key alternative changes that we can incorporate into our own cooking, shedding calories here and there in order to help weight loss. The hosts don’t believe in too many restrictions, but rather in substitutions that we can do in our everyday lives that will have a significant impact over time. For instance, for a participant who loved tiramisu, they created a tiramisu recipe that was nearly half the calories of the kind she originally ate. Plus, by following these recipes you can learn how to cook, impress your friends and lose weight.

You Are What You Eat – What Is it

  • Channel 4 (UK), Viva (Canada)
  • Host: Gillian McKeith, PhD in Holistic Nutrition from the American Holistic College of Nutrition (now known as the Clayton College of Natural Health). She has stated that her purpose in life is to “empower people to improve their lives through information, food and lifestyle.”

In every episode, Gillian McKeith goes to someone’s house and helps them get rid of their unhealthy habits. Oftentimes, the participants are dangerously overweight and find that their diet is holding them back from flourishing in their lives and affecting their personal relationships.

After analyzing their current diet, as well as their emotional backgrounds, Gillian devises an eight-week personalized eating and exercise plan. During this time, she often checks back on them – helping by teaching them easy homemade recipes and giving incentives for exercising. By the end of the show, the participant has lost some weight – nothing as drastic as the end of The Biggest Loser, but valuable nonetheless.

How Will You Are What You Eat Help Weight Loss

The way this show may affect you to change your diet is through shock value that will likely arise when you put yourself in the participant’s shoes. Gillian asks each participant to keep track of their food intake for a week before she meets them. Then, she lays out all of the food they ate on a table.

Often, the foods are rather nauseating when seen in such huge quantities – think five plates of fish and chips next to a dozen servings of french fries, five shepherd’s pies and 16 glasses of cola. Imagine what your one week’s worth of food would look like on a table in front of you.

Besides that, Gillian takes people’s stool samples and often shows it to the viewers when she’s analyzing it. Not only is it uncomfortable to watch (and definitely not for the faint of heart) but visualizing ourselves in that position ends up being an eye-opener. Plus, unlike most dieting TV shows, Gillian always consults a doctor and together they analyze what’s lacking in the participant’s system, and the dangerous of such deficiencies.

Eat to Lose Weight

So whether you need some alternatives to your current diet or you literally need to be shocked into losing weight, check out these two hour-long TV shows with experts that can help you in your quest for the perfect figure. Some of their recipes and ideas are also available online. And remember, the ultimate way to lose weight and be healthy is through a combination of a balanced diet and exercise.


www.gillianmckeith.info, “About Gillian McKeith” (accessed on February 16, 2010)

http://www.channel4.com/food/on-tv/cook-yourself-thin, “Meet the Presenters” (accessed on February 16, 2010)


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