A year after she did a “90-Day Challenge” for weight loss products company ViSalus, Ruby Gettinger’s weight is still stalled at just above 300 pounds and her affiliation with the multi-level marketer seems to have ended. The one-time reality star and her two best friends have now turned up on YouTube, trying to get enough views to spark network interest in a new TV show.
Back in April 2013, Ruby weighed in at the end of the “90-Day Challenge” during which she used a ViSalus “transformation” products package costing about $250 per month. The goal was to lose 50 lbs and she lost exactly that much, weighing in the middle of the day, fully clothed and in shoes. Her weight was at 329 lbs, one pound more than the last recorded weight from the end of her reality show two years earlier.
She announced that she would be doing another 90-day challenge with the goal of participating in a triathlon. Through 2013, Ruby maintained a Twitter account and Facebook page, keeping in touch with her fanbase while she shilled for ViSalus products through an affiliates webpage.
That second 90 days didn’t seem to happen and the ViSalus challenge videos have disappeared along with the affiliates page. Back in March, Ruby appeared on YouTube with her friends, Jeff and Georgia, practically begging for viewers to spread the word of their video so Ruby might be able to get another TV show if the video can get at least 500,000 views. A month after its posting, it’s at around 8000-some views.
The video is a 30-minute babble-fest as the trio rambles on about movies they’ve seen, that they’re all single, Tyler Perry, and Ruby’s personal slang vocabulary. ViSalus products get only a very brief mention when Georgia talks about how she would sometimes give her son protein shakes for his “little body.” The one revelation—Ruby announces that her weight is at 309 lbs. On her Facebook page, she posted a video back in January about doing the ViSalus “Project10” to drop ten pounds. She gets on a scale and shows that she weighs 309. With the disappearance of the “challenge” videos and the affiliates page and Ruby weighing the same 309 two months after the “Project10” challenge, it seems apparent that the affiliation with ViSalus has ended.
Ruby Gettinger makes me sad. She does not appear to have a means of earning a living other than by trying to carry on this painfully protracted and now truly depressing pretense. By seeking to make her weight loss battle a public one pursued for profit, she has never gotten the focused, medically-based treatment she’s needed for years. In a 2013 interview with the news magazine 20/20, Ruby admitted that the pressures of the reality show caused her to gain weight and to work at eating in secret. She’d put on disguises to go out for fast food in her hometown. While doing her show, she’d go on binges after weigh ins and figured out how to shift her weight on the scale to change the number. In rare moments through the past few years, it has come out that she deals with diabetes. She has also said she would never have weight loss surgery because she has fallen into that shame trap of believing she has to “prove” she doesn’t need it. That is particularly unfortunate as I think she could have been reaping the benefits for years by now. She has turned to shilling for shake products instead of getting sound psychological counseling. She tries to get YouTube views instead of researching bariatric treatment.
I’ve wondered if Ruby believes on some level that if she actually lost all her weight, she wouldn’t be much of a “celebrity” anymore. Her public persona is as a very fat woman whose “entertainment value” is derived from her weight loss struggles and sympathy for the difficulties she’s faced since childhood. If that were to end, who would Ruby Gettinger be?