Has appeared on The Today Show, Extra, Fox and Friends, and others
Weight Watchers leader
Hosts 3 minute segment on Better TV (affiliated with Better Homes and Gardens)
Author of weekly column, Here’s the Skinny
Children: Aleeta, 22; Adam 20; Alan, 9; Andre 7
Kim Bensen: 'Finally Thin'
By Mimi Elliott
The 700 Club
CBN.com - EATING HERSELF TO DEATH
In high school Kim fluctuated 10-15 pounds in a yo-yo cycle that would haunt her for years. In college she ballooned to almost 200 pounds, but lost weight for her wedding in 1984. Soon Kim gained it all back and more. For the next 10 years Kim struggled in the 200 pound range; for 10 years after that in the 300 pound range. She tried every weight-loss program in existence.
“Guess what?” Kim said. “They all worked! But after a while I would feel deprived or discouraged and fall off the wagon, gaining back all that I had lost and then some.”
Normal, every-day activities became increasingly difficult. Her cholesterol was astronomically high. Eventually walking was limited for Kim. She even broke a home scale when she tried to weigh herself.
“Home scales only go up to 300 pounds anyway,” Kim said. “When I sat down, my stomach came to the end of my knees. I was eating myself to death.”
Then, on October 1, 2001, Kim cried out to God in a desperate, broken prayer which would change her heart and her life. Three days later, with renewed determination and hope, Kim walked through the doors of Weight Watchers® (again) and weighed in at 347 pounds.
“I knew I would eventually quit and gain the weight back, but I was hoping to be able to breathe a little easier and possibly fit into plus size clothing stores again, which I had outgrown,” Kim said. “The idea that I might actually become thin never even entered my mind.”
For two years, Kim planned meals, counted POINTS™, drank water, weighed, measured and kept track of her points on a "tracking bracelet" she made. She focused on changing recipes and learned behavior modification from the inside out. Slowly Kim watched the scales inch downward, and her once hopeless spirit began to soar.
“The more I put into it, the more fun it became! I was actually enjoying my new way of eating!” Kim said.
Week after week, she stuck with her plan and faced and overcame her challenges and plateaus. For the first time in years, Kim weighed under 300 lbs...then, on October 7, 2003, she reached her goal.
In the end Kim lost 212 pounds, lowered her cholesterol more than 200 points, lost an inch and a half of fat in each wrist, and went down from a size 6x to a size 6 (that’s 14 dress sizes!).
“I can walk through a restaurant without having to lay out a strategic map to see what tables I'll fit between; I can fit in any chair, buckle up in a car and get toys out from the under the middle of my boys' beds. I can fit socks inside my shoes and can wear over-the-counter jewelry without extenders. I even joined Curves to help me with toning and maintenance,” she said.
Her weight loss has not only changed her health and looks, it’s changed her profession. In 2005, Kim became a leader for Weight Watchers® and began cooking for her members – using them as guinea pigs for new recipes. Today she writes a weekly weight loss column called “Here's The Skinny” and is the Diet Editor for Better TV and Parents TV.
A year ago friends encouraged her to market one of her favorite products – a 110 calorie, high fiber, low fat bagel – available in six flavors. Kim’s Light Bagels are shipped to all 50 states and are in major grocery store shelves across New England, New York and New Jersey. Kim says it’s important for people who have little willpower to write down their plan every day.
“God reminds us that He will give us a way out of every temptation,” Kim said. “The less willpower you have, the more you need structure to stay on track.” She also said that there’s no straight line to success in weight loss.
“Find a diet that you love and enjoy the journey,” Kim said. “What I had to do was fall in love with a new way of eating.”
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