Accusations about the less-savory aspects of NBC’s race to weight loss The Biggest Loser have bedeviled the show for years. (Alongside other reports, suggesting that the show’s hardcore approach to shedding pounds just doesn’t make much biological sense.) A recent Esquire story, for example, had multiple former cast mates go on the record with claims that Biggest Loser trainers and production assistants brought them diuretics and diet drugs to help them beat the scale. (The theory being, the bigger the weight losses, the bigger the ratings for the show.)
The Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department is apparently taking at least some of those accounts seriously. According to Deadline, the department is “conducting an inquiry regarding the unsubstantiated allegations” into the use or presence of illegal narcotics on the set. (It’s not clear if they’re also looking for evidence of substances more normally associated with quick weight loss, like amphetamines, or the banned “diet drug” ephedra.) NBC hasn’t commented on the story, but representatives for the show—which recently finished its 17th season—have been quick in the past to deny the claims, and stress that The Biggest Loser has a zero-tolerance policy on the use of drugs.