Isa experienced food addiction and body image issues from early childhood. “I would have done anything to be thin,” she says. After topping 242 pounds (110 kg), she joined OA and knew right away she was in the right place.
ane. That’s the word Charles uses to describe his relationship with food before OA. He went to his first OA meeting only to support a friend, but he did not recognize his own problem. Years later, when he could no longer control his weight, a growing sense of hopelessness made Charles ready to hear OA’s message.
Esti remembers as a teen feeling a compulsive need to diet and believing she was heavier than she actually was. She ate to cope with negative emotions and could not stop thinking about food.
Esti recalls immediately feeling comfortable at OA meetings and finding abstinence. Looking back, Esti says her inner life has changed significantly, and she is able to live her life without obsessing about food.
A preacher’s son, Joe’s compulsive eating was born when he became an adult and renounced the religion of his upbringing. From then on, Joe says he was “running too the food or away from the food.” At Joe’s first OA meeting, he felt hope seeing that others had overcome their food obsessions.
Before OA, food ruled Dodie’s every waking moment, even from a very early age. In college, Dodie weighed 215 pounds (97.5 kg) and felt trapped in ugliness. When she realized she had a problem with food, she found OA, and now maintains a 85-pound (38.5-kg) weight loss.
Bob was already in shape and at a healthy weight but learned in OA that his exercise habits masked a food addiction. He describes how OA gave him a safe place to find recovery and build a productive life.
Food was Bob’s sole obsession. He was selfish with food, and his unapologetic overeating even drove away friends. As an agnostic, he was uncomfortable hearing talk about God at his first meeting, but he stuck around, and now his life is changed completely and for the better.
Mary joined OA after a visit to her mother made her significant weight gain an unavoidable topic of discussion. In OA, she was surprised to find people just like her, people who had exceptional problems with food. She was also surprised to see how serene and healthy these people were as a result of working the OA program.