TV Shows That Make You Healthier

Shows that deliver the best messages and role models for healthier lifestyles.

Sept. 10, 2011— -- Healthy TV Winner: Hot In Cleveland, TV Land

Three witty women (stars Wendie Malick, Jane Leeves, and Valerie Bertinelli) adopt Cleveland as the heartland of self-acceptance to show that hot equals healthy. The 89-year-old spark plug that is Betty White adds to the high jinks.

Best Integration of Medical News: Grey's Anatomy,ABC

This hospital drama, starring Ellen Pompeo and Patrick Dempsey, has fearlessly tackled tough, topical health issues with intelligence and compassion, from Alzheimer's disease to post-traumatic stress, ever since the show's inception in 2005.

Most Sensitive Portrayal of Autism: Parenthood, NBC

Watching Adam and Kristina Braverman (Peter Krause and Monica Potter) come to terms with their son Max's special needs gave a heartfelt--and helpful--glimpse of families living with a loved one with a condition on the autism spectrum.

Prevention Healthy TV Winner: The Biggest Loser, NBC

his show is a phenomenon, driving contestants to get healthy and drop pounds so they can win $250,000. With the help of ex-BL trainer Jillian Michaels and host Alison Sweeney, these men and women touch viewers' hearts and minds as they reshape their bodies--and their lives.

Change Your Life Today With The Biggest Loser Diet

Most Clever Healthy Lifestyle Clues: Rizzoli & Isles, TNT

Detective Rizzoli (Angie Harmon) may be a crime-fighting babe, but she never wastes an opportunity to slip health information into a sentence--chastising a colleague to switch to decaf coffee or owning up to her childhood as an overweight kid, for example.

Most Relevant Use of a Medical Breakthrough: Glee, FOX

This ensemble musical show (with Jane Lynch, Matthew Morrison, and Lea Michele) has a ton of heart, featuring a wheelchair-bound character as just one of the gang. When Artie (Kevin McHale) got outfitted with a robotic exoskeleton called ReWalk, which (in real life) allows paraplegics partial mobility, we all got lumps in our throats.

Best Integration of Green Living: Modern Family, ABC

Typical episodes include Mitchell (Jesse Tyler Ferguson) coming home from shopping for local produce at the farmers' market, his reusable market basket filled with kale, while the Dunphys (Julie Bowen and Ty Burrell) play a boys-versus-girls ball game for the right to pass on dishwashing duty.

Prevention Healthy TV Winner: Parks And Recreation, NBC

Amy Poehler heads a cast that's fun, funny, and sexy. When Chris (Rob Lowe) offers a guest some greens and purrs, "Try it, salad's good for you," you know mesclun's made it to the big time.

Best Window Into the Aging Guy's Soul: Men Of A Certain Age, TNT

Whether it's adjusting to reading glasses or coping with bigger-deal scares like cancer, Ray Romano and his band of buds give women a secret decoder ring to men's mental and physical health concerns.

Most Daring Concept: The Big C, Showtime

Skin cancer takes center stage as actress Laura Linney's Cathy lives a full life, despite her diagnosis.

Tie! Dancing With The Stars, ABC, and So You Think You Can Dance, FOX

On DWTS (hosted by Brooke Burke and Tom Bergeron), stars like Kirstie Alley have made dancing for weight loss simply inspiring. And SYTYCD has given us congressionally endorsed National Dance Day, which promotes an active lifestyle. Let's tango!


More from Prevention:

Hot in Cleveland Star Valerie Bertinelli's Stay-Slim Tips

Biggest Loser Success Story: Season 11 Winner Olivia Ward

Laura Linney, Skin Cancer, and The Big C

Change Your Life Today With The Biggest Loser Diet