SCMP Tuesday, August 21, 2001

TV slimmers hungry for cash


A 124kg, 18-year-old student will go on a diet with five other overweight contestants to battle for a winner-takes-all $100,000 prize in a new TVB reality game show.
Six contestants from the show, Slim Fight, were introduced to each other yesterday before the 10-episode weekly programme makes its debut on the station's Chinese channel, Jade, on September 3.
TVB has claimed credit for creating the show's concept, although it admitted overseas reality shows had been an influence.
The six contestants will each undergo a slimming programme involving both physical exercises and individual diets under the supervision of three doctors and a nutritionist.
The one who loses the most weight at the end of the 10 weeks will be awarded $100,000. The show will follow each of them throughout, detailing their attempts to fight the flab.
Estella Liu Chi-mei, 18, who is 1.71 metres tall and weighs 124.3kg, hopes to lose 45kg through the show to realise her dream of becoming a model.
"I face discrimination by employers in finding work because I am too fat. I have been gaining weight at a rate of 9kg a year since Primary Four," she said.
Another contestant, Cat Lo, 22, who weighs 90kg, said her desire to be lifted off her feet by her much slimmer boyfriend had motivated her to enter.
Estella, who often eats instant noodles before going to bed, said she had not gone on a diet before because she did not have the willpower. However, she said yesterday that she was determined to lose weight not only to win the $100,000 but to slim.
Show consultant and family physician Dr Betty Kwan Ka-mei said the programme was not aimed at encouraging uncontrolled dieting.
"We hope, through the programme, to spread the message of losing weight in the right way. Losing weight is a way to stay healthy, especially for those who are suffering from obesity."
Slim Fight will be broadcast on Jade on Mondays at 11.10pm.
Meanwhile, the TV quiz show war starts tonight with TVB's The Weakest Link going head to head with a celebrity-packed special of ATV's Who Wants to be a Millionaire?