Commentary: Ten years and counting on 200-pound weight loss

“Results Not Typical” is a phrase quietly screaming from the bottom of every piece of weight-loss program promotional literature.

It means that the person being promoted as an example of what a diet can do for you, probably won’t actually happen to you.

I know. For years I was the typical example of what really happens when you join a diet program. But 10 years ago I decided to change all that.

In early October of 2003, after a lifetime living in morbid obesity that limited my activities with my four children, squelched my confidence and dampened my happiness, after 20 years of yo-yo dieting, I reached a healthy weight for the first time in my adult life. I was 42 years old.

Fame and skepticism

Shortly thereafter, I walked into my local deli to purchase a newspaper with a front page article written about my success entitled: “Shelton woman loses 200+ pounds!”

As I purchased the paper, the checkout woman looked at me and asked, “Is that you?” With almost a giggle, I quickly answered, “Yes.” I was famous.

As I walked away with my head in the clouds, I heard her mutter to her co-worker, “You watch. She’ll gain it all back and more within a few years. Let them run a story when she’s kept it off for 10 years. Then I’ll pat her on the back.”

Well, I really don’t want a pat on the back from her. On the other hand, I totally understand where she’s coming from.

The challenge of losing weight

Statistics say that on any given day more than 90 million Americans are on a diet. Of those, only 5% will ever reach their weight loss goals. And of that 5%, a mere 2% to 3% will keep it off long term.

Yes, we Americans do tend to keep re-finding the same pounds over and over again. Results typical.

But it doesn’t have to be that way. My mission since then has become: “To help others get rid of their excess, unhealthy fat forever.”

Okay, I don’t actually phrase it that way in my brochure, but isn’t that what we all want?

And I’m here today, 10 years later and still at goal, to tell you that you really can do it, too.

Jubilee to mark my decade

Join me, on Wednesday, Oct. 2 from 6-8 p.m., or Saturday, Oct. 5. from 8-10 a.m. at the Kim Bensen Weight Loss Center, 405 Bridgeport Ave., Shelton, for my 10-year jubilee, where I’ll be sharing my story and helping others get started in their own amazing untypical journeys.

Remember, if you do what you always did, you’re going to get what you always got.

Kim Bensen of Shelton, author of the book "Finally Thin!," owns the Kim Bensen Weight Loss Center and Kim’s Light Café and Smoothie Bar in Shelton. Learn more at