Mix Fitness's Blog

Jillian Michaels Gets Sued: From A Trainer’s Perspective

Posted in Uncategorized by mixfitness on February 11, 2010
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Jillian Michaels is being sued for false advertising.  If the name doesn’t ring a bell, she’s one of the personal trainers on the TV show “The Biggest Loser.”  Michaels endorses the diet supplement Jillian Michaels’ Maximum Strength Calorie Control as well as other supplement products.  “Sadly, Michaels has decided to exploit her fame and goodwill by collaborating with Thin Care and Basic Research to promote a weight loss supplement that purportedly will cause weight loss by itself, without any additional effort on the part of the consumer,” the lawsuit alleges.  The plaintiff is seeking to prohibit the sale of the product as well as damages.

Before you start calling the plaintiff names, consider that these products exist because people do buy them.  There are those that truly believe there is a miracle pill.  Many people respect Jillian for the work she’s doing on the reality TV show.  So, why not trust her when she says a supplement will help you lose weight?

My biggest issue with this is Michaels has stepped outside of ethical practice for personal trainers.  Respectable trainers do not recommend supplements.  It is outside our scope of practice.  We know that pills do not cause you to lose weight.  It is the job of nutritionists and registered dieticians to prescribe foods.

Many fitness professionals are members of the group IDEA Health and Fitness Association.  The IDEA Code of Ethics for Personal Trainers states, “As a member of IDEA Health & Fitness Association, I will be guided by the best interests of the client and will practice within the scope of my education and knowledge. I will maintain the education and experience necessary to appropriately train clients; will behave in a positive and constructive manner; and will use truth, fairness and integrity to guide all my professional decisions and relationships.

‘Always be guided by the best interestes of the client.

Remember that a personal trainer’s primary responsibility is to the client’s safety, health and welfare; never compromise this responsibility for your own self-interest, personal advantage or monetary gain.

Recommend products or services only if they will benefit the client’s health and well-being, not because they will benefit you financially or occupationally.'”

I believe Jillian knows better, but money talks.  The take home message:  Weight loss pills DO NOT work.  Do not buy them.  Do not believe anyone, even if it’s your personal trainer, who suggests using them.

Check out my blog: The Truth About Weight Loss


2 Responses to 'Jillian Michaels Gets Sued: From A Trainer’s Perspective'

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  1. Patty George said,

    I agree, Sara. I was very disappointed to see Jillian hawking quick weight loss supplements. For an hour every week we see her pushing exercise, pushing good nutrition, and screaming (yes, screaming) at contestants about the fact that the only way they will be successful in their weightloss/fitness plan is by understanding why they behave the way they do. Now she’s saying “Here, use this supplement!” Even if she “legitimizes” it by saying it should be PART of a healthy diet and fitness routine, many people will process it as “Jillian says this will make me lose weight.” Period. My respect for her has dropped quite a bit. Sell out.

  2. Great job Sara! Keep doing great things! Are you going to IDEA Personal Training Institute next weekend in VA? Let’s get together if you are.

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