I’ve been watching this show recently (don’t judge me!) and find it to be fascinating on many levels.
First, this is true-life human drama. Will the “star” of this episode make it? Will they find support or sabotage from their loved ones? Will they suffer dire consequences following surgery? I find myself having several emotions during a 60-minute episode ranging from compassion, unbelief, anger, hope, annoyance, etc., and that makes for good television I reckon.
Second, from the perspective of a healthcare provider this interests me because it’s not Gray’s Anatomy or any other of those medical-type shows that make it seem that love and sexual encounters inside the hospital are more common than bladder scans or blood draws. Rather the real raw deal is shown including post-op pain and nausea, continued food cravings, relationship difficulties, and people with deep emotional scars that have contributed to their self-comforting with food.
Third, as a formerly obese person myself (although I never approached the weights of the men and women on this show) I find myself cycling between compassion for them versus annoyance, especially when they refuse to get up and walk following surgery or sometimes lie to the surgeon at follow-up appointments when asked about their habits at home or adamantly state that they will do things their own way because they know better than the surgeon, they are being pushed too hard, etc. I don’t know him, but it seems Dr. Nowzaradan is doing all he can to help patients who are hanging onto life by very thin threads. I do smile every time he tells them they need to eat more protein and “no carbs.”
I can’t help but wonder about the men and women who go to Houston to be seen for initial consultation and are given an eating plan and told to come back in one month to see of they’ve made progress and can be scheduled for weightloss surgery…and don’t ever come back. Of course those don’t make it to my television, but I am concerned about them nonetheless.