When “Getting Healthy” Goes TOO Far ~ Red’s Testimony





Editor’s Note: The pictures above don’t tell Red’s entire story. In pursuit of being slender, Red went too far. She found herself in the clutches of an only recently recognized eating disorder. Thin Within was actually used to deliver Red from her eating disorder in a very real way. Read on for the unusual, but incredibly valuable story!


I have wrestled with my weight since I was 13 ( I’m 61 now). It started from a comment my mom made—not to hurt me—as she was working on a dress she was making for me. She said “You’re so big!”I look back at pictures now and I was really average. But I had an addictive personality because God was not in my life at that time. I was very unhappy. I began to seek refuge from my pain in food and science fiction books–and diet after diet for many, many years.

A common weight loss plan enabled me to go from 199 to 167, but with extra weight remaining, five years ago, I couldn’t seem to lose any more weight. I resorted to the single most restrictive diet on the face of the earth. This diet helped me to drop the rest of the weight…But never in a million years would I have guessed that I wouldn’t stop at a healthy weight. Never!! Me?? The compulsive over-eaterAnorexic? Me? Never!!!

The type of anorexia I experienced is called Orthorexia–an eating disorder with a focus on “eating healthy.” Sounds good doesn’t it?

But how healthy is healthy these days? What can you really eat?

Very little.

Or so I was told with this restrictive plan.

But, since I was on a roll, losing weight, so I started towards incorporating only raw foods into my life. It was at that point when the realization hit me that there is precious little in this world that this diet says is acceptable–healthy–for me to eat.

I am around 5’1″ tall, I was  109 pounds believing I needed to get just a little bit lower when the Lord stopped me. He knew what I didn’t. He reminded me of Thin Within. I had tried to do Thin Within on occasion since 2000. I just couldn’t do it. This time, though, the Lord showed me a stronghold of fear at the center of my life. I had previously made a vow, kind of like the curse on the movie  “Thinner,” that I was never going to be fat again! Never!!!! Never!!!!  No Never!!!!

No matter what I had to do.

He showed me where in my many journals I had written this proclamation.  I had to repent of that vow, as it clearly had plummeted me into  a death spiral. Severe control was the only way I felt I could fulfill this vow. The diet plan I was using required that I uphold these restrictions. It was my means to living out the vow!

I couldn’t resist the Lord’s call, though.

I will never forget the retreat weekend when I laid down my resistance and began using the principles of Thin Within. Scary!!!!!! Wonderful!!! Can you imagine? A retreat? Choosing a retreat as the venue for taking the plunge to trust God and try living according to physical hunger and satisfaction…with all of the food that was available, seemed crazy at best. For three years prior to this time, I cooked and brought my own food to every public event! And  yet this is precisely where God had me. I had no control over the food at all!

I will celebrate a year in February. Thankfully, I put on the few pounds I needed to in order to truly be healthy again. I had no idea that my husband and others had become very concerned for me. They had seen what I did not–that I had let my focus on “getting healthy” get to a very unhealthy place.

For six months, I have been able to maintain this new weight. If I am honest, I am still testing it. I hope I can relax more next year. The biggest thing for me is to wait for hunger. Which I do. I will never have to fear putting on weight if I wait for hunger. That’s what naturally thin people do.

The second boon to breaking free from orthorexia is that my grocery bill was cut by $75.00 a week! The Lord knew our imminent financial circumstances  would not have been able to sustain the cost of the diet plan I had been on! I am constantly amazed at how little Thin Within costs. This is such a gift to us in this difficult time.

joanscookiesThirdly, The Lord has opened a door for a new business venture I never could have succeeded at before. I bake, roll and decorate cookies with butter cream icing. It is taking off here where I live (in Kansas City) because no one else is doing it! I have an order for seven dozen for Christmas Eve! I used to do this at a little “mom and pop shop” in Iowa when we lived there, and now that my precious daughter bought me a shredder for Christmas, I can ship the cookies anywhere in the world. I have the help, wisdom and support of my old boss, too.

Thin Within helped me get the food out of my ears 🙂 so I could hear the Lord’s voice. I haven’t had a relationship with Him like this since I got saved in the Jesus People Movement in 1971, 42 years ago. (It takes some of us a while!!!LOL!!!). I never want to go back because to lose this with Him would kill me. He is so precious and dear and the best business Partner—my husband coming a close second—that anyone could have.

So, you are never too old, too far gone, or too much of a failure for Thin Within to really change your life. This has been a fabulous year.

Hugs to all who need them today.

~ Red, from Kansas City, MO.

What About You?

Can you identify with Red’s story? Have you ever wondered if you have taken “getting healthy” to an extreme that isn’t so healthy for you emotionally, spiritually, or physically? Do you feel ensnared by the need to eat whole foods? Are you fearful? What is the Holy Spirit breathing to your spirit right now? Is it possible that moderation in all things is the way of freedom for you?

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6 Responses to When “Getting Healthy” Goes TOO Far ~ Red’s Testimony

  1. Karen December 23, 2013 at 8:36 am #

    Speaks to me and where I am! I have a physical problem so not sure where this will take me but feel God is directing me here!

  2. peacelily70x7 December 23, 2013 at 12:21 pm #

    We all need to know God’s leading.. wonderful testimony!

  3. Karen Kincaid December 23, 2013 at 12:24 pm #

    I can absolutely identify with Red. It’s where I am, too! I lost 45 pounds several years ago and was very proud in doing it. I have a lot of self-control. The trouble was — my control became obsessive. I bought book after book about healthy eating — it was an obsession. I was constantly searching for the truth about good health. It was so frustrating, though! Every time I thought I knew what to eat that would be healthy for me, the news would say that particular food was no longer good. The “good health people” are so fickle!!! And I was so frustrated. That’s why Thin Within has been my best option (and I’ve tried LOTS of options.) So many programs are legalistic. Now — this doesn’t mean that I eat chocolate, cookies, cakes, pies, deep-fried pickles, Big Macs, and French fries laden with gooey cheese sauce as my main intake. But, Thin Within doesn’t make them absolute no-no’s all the time. Making something “off-limits” makes us want it all the more! After being on this journey for awhile, I have learned to read my body well enough to know that certain foods are good, but not beneficial. I can eat them, but I know when I do — I won’t feel so good afterwards. It’s the price I pay for eating them. So — most of the time, I actually prefer fruits, veggies, nuts, whole grain crackers, cheese, etc. — because I feel good when I eat them — not because some doctor, book, or healthy diet plan commands me to. The other foods I mentioned? I eat them occasionally, but don’t really like to eat them anymore, because I just don’t like how I feel when I do. It’s taken me about 10 years to settle into this — a lot of “observe and correct” and finding the right program for me. I had to find the fine balance between eating too much and becoming to legalistic about my health and weight. And — it’s constant “maintenance” in the area of keeping my Heavenly Father as the focus in everything and not making the weight/health/diet thing an idol and obsession. Thanks so much for your post, Red. You bring to light –not all who are involved in this are necessarily over-weight. There are a lot ofother issues at stake in this whole journey, as well.

    • Rosa Garcia December 25, 2013 at 11:52 pm #

      I think this is where I am too – in that space of trying to find the fine balance between being too legalistic about my eating and simply overeating. I struggled with an eating disorder about 6 years ago. I’m shocked that it has taken so long and I’m still looking for that balance. I was a “naturally thin” eater before. I thought I would just rebound back to that after I surrendered my food and weight obsession, but I’m still in the boonies, unsure what to do on a daily basis. Eating 0-5 is great, but I know it is not what I was doing before I developed the disorder, so it feels forced sometimes, and not intuitive. My weight never returned to its exact point, hovering a bit above, but I’m older too, so I’m not sure what to expect. Thanks for listening.

      • Heidi Bylsma December 27, 2013 at 8:13 am #

        Hi, Rosa. I would just get off the scale instead of letting it dictate what you are doing. Let the Lord guide your eating. It sounds like that might be really helpful at this stage for you. 0 to 5 can become a law, too, if we aren’t careful. Holding all things loosely and looking to the Lord for his guidance and direction is key!

  4. Christina December 23, 2013 at 3:45 pm #

    I loved reading this! I could feel your joy! I, too, dealt with the fear of food earlier this year. I was so afraid that sugar and carbs would kill me. But God got my attention and showed me His truth. Praise God!

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