Turn Back Your Body Clock

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Turn Back Your Body Clock TV Poster Image
Tough-talking doc helps people get healthy.

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The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Positive Messages

The series highlights the importance of a healthy diet and regular exercise in living a long life. Cutting-edge medical technology allows viewers to see the damaging effects of unhealthy living on internal organs. Dr. Coales can be very frank -- sometimes almost cruel -- in her assessments, but it's all in the name of "tough love."


Dr. Coales is very critical (to the point of cruelty) of the people's she's evaluating, using harsh, confrontational language to scare them into taking corrective action.


Subjects pose in their underwear so doctors and viewers can see the changes in their physique.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Some scenes show adults drinking alcohol, but the series points out the damaging effects that overindulgence can have on a person's health.

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that this British series centers on people who are determined to change their unhealthy lifestyles and repair the damage they've done to their bodies. With professional guidance, they make radical diet and exercise changes that often produce amazing results. The show's no-nonsense doctor is often very harsh in her criticism of people's sagging physiques and damaged internal organs, regularly making comments like "Look at the fat -- it's everywhere!" Though the series' 30-minute format oversimplifies the difficult process of changing unhealthy lifestyles, the results may encourage viewers to look for ways to remedy their own bad habits. Remind kids that changes this extreme should be made under a doctor's supervision.

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What's the story?

In TURN BACK YOUR BODY CLOCK, a physician works with patients to reverse the damage that long-term unhealthy living has done to their bodies. Each episode of this British series centers on someone who's looking to improve upon a history of unhealthy diet and exercise choices, hopefully setting the stage for a significantly longer life. \"Shock doc\" Dr. Una Coales uses high-tech internal scans, physical exams, and tests that gauge fitness level to calculate her subjects' \"predicted death age\" -- which always delivers its intended jolt of fear -- and bring them face to face with images of their flabby physique and damaged internal organs. Coales is callous to the point of cruelty with her patients, often making remarks like \"Are you proud of your appearance?\" or \"Look at the fat -- it's everywhere!\" But her icy bedside manner -- coupled with the harsh reality of the patients' situation -- solidifies their resolve, and they commit to her eight-week program of a healthy diet and an exercise regime designed by trainer Tim Bean.

Is it any good?

Since each episode is only 30 minutes long -- and the first 10 minutes are dedicated to the doctor's ominous predictions of early death -- the show tends to present a very simplified overview of the health-makeover process and understate the hurdles that accompany such an extreme lifestyle overhaul. But there's no denying that the results are inspiring, especially when the subjects' "before" and "after" photos and organ scans are compared, showing their bodies' newfound rejuvenation.

Turn Back Your Body Clock includes information about recommended daily allowances of food and drink, risk factors for various diseases, and easy fitness tests viewers can do at home. The series' educational quality makes it a great choice for watching and discussing with teens and a powerful motivator for including exercise and the four food groups in your family's daily routine.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the importance of a healthy lifestyle. How do diet and exercise affect the way your body functions? How do different foods provide you with what you need? What happens if you omit certain types from your diet? What kinds of exercise do you enjoy? What are some ways you can add simple exercises such as walking to your daily routine? This series offers plenty of inspiration for families to get out of the house and walk, run, or play together. Parents can also encourage tweens and teens to pitch in on planning and preparing healthy meals.

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