Weight Loss Challenge Follow-Ups: The Interventions

Weight Loss Interventions
Dr. Phil checks back in with the Weight Loss Challengers to see how they're doing.

When Dr. Phil intervened with "Big John" and his fianceé Suzanne, they were enabling each other's eating. They started on Dr. Phil's Ultimate Weight Loss Challenge, and by the end of the second month, John had lost 100 pounds.


"He looked and felt so much better," Suzanne says. "We were really, really excited."


Everything was looking good, and then tragedy struck. On July 1, 2004 John died.


"I believe that John died from complications of asthma," says Scott Banks, Doctor of Chiropractic and nutritional counselor, who was working with John.

"Reaching out to Dr. Phil had made John's last months more comfortable and he was the most positive he'd been in a long, long time," Suzanne says. "I take comfort in knowing that he passed peacefully in sleep, and that his pain and discomfort had ended."


Since the show, Suzanne has lost 50 pounds and is continuing on her weight loss journey.

When Joell first appeared on the show, she weighed nearly 700 pounds and couldn't leave her house. Since then she has lost 260

pounds, and now weighs in at 408 pounds.


"If I hadn't come on the Dr. Phil show last year, you would be taping my funeral, not my achievements," says Joell. She was following Dr. Phil's program, and then had gastric bypass surgery because her doctors decided it would help with the lymphedema " swelling of tissues " in her legs. Now she can leave her house, drive her car, and swim three to four days a week. Dr. Phil arranged for her to see therapist Julie Gauthier from the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology in Palo Alto, Calif., as well as a nutritionist and an exercise trainer.


"The future now is unbelievable. I see myself traveling, getting a job. I'm hoping one day that I can actually have children," she says.


"What do you say to those people who say it's too late?" Dr. Phil asks her.


"It's never too late. Never. Don't ever give up," she says.

When Tim and Jan first appeared on the show, they were sabotaging each other with food. Since appearing on the show, Jan has lost 49 pounds and 11 1/4 inches off her waist, hip and thighs.


"The key that really struck a chord with me was Key Three, Creating a No-Fail Environment," says Jan, who wants to lose 72 more pounds.


Tim has also done well. He has lost 51 pounds, and his pant size went down from 40 to 35. He's at his goal weight.

Jan explains to Dr. Phil how they put their weight loss on project status. They eat breakfast every day, plan their meals, journal, make time for exercise, do all the keys and read through the book daily.