Occasionally I receive feedback from my readers that indicates they feel that I strongly dislike Overeaters Anonymous. So I want to take this opportunity to clarify my feelings about the OA fellowship.

I’m no stranger to Overeaters Anonymous, as I regularly attended meetings from 1978 until 2000. So for nearly half of my life I’ve been an active member of OA. When I write about OA I hopefully know a lot about my subject matter. Disagree with my opinions about OA all you like, but I hope y’all will at least acknowledge that I have done my in-person homework for more years than you have probably even known OA exists. 😀

Generally speaking, I am pro-Overeaters Anonymous, but with reservations. I have NO problem whatsoever with the pure, unpolluted message of OA.

However, where I can and do draw the line is with the anti-carbohydrate hysertia of the sub-set of Overeaters Anonymous members who believe that following their rigid food plan (with it’s dozens of insane rules) is the ONLY way to REALLY abstain from compulsive overeating (e.g., the only way to achieve food sobriety).

"Beyond Our Wildest Dreams" offers a wise and isightful history of the Overeaters Anonymous fellowship, as seen through the eyes of one of the fellowship's co-founders.

"Beyond Our Wildest Dreams" offers a wise and isightful history of the Overeaters Anonymous fellowship, as seen through the eyes of one of the fellowship's co-founders.

If you will read the wonderful book Beyond Our Wildest Dreams, written by one of OA’s co-founders, you will discover the REAL meaning of the concept known as “abstinence” and how it has NOTHING to do with which food plan is “better” than another. This book also does a fabulous job of tracing it’s bizarre beginnings the anti-carbohydrate idiocy of the so-called H.O.W. Movement.

I support the OA-compatible concept that each fellowship member is free to choose their own food plan (with the consultation of a health care professional). On the contrary, the anti-carb-obsessed elitists of the H.O.W. movement generally do not respect the right of OA members to make this choice. Their attitude toward choosing a food plan is best described as “My Way Or  The Highway!”…and that is NOT compatible with OA’s pure message of tolerance admist a diversity of food plans followed by it’s members.

Overeaters Anonymous? I love it’s simple, powerful and inclusive approach to recovery from food addiction.

On the other hand, The H.O.W. extremists I avoid. If I wanted to be emotionally abused, I sure wouldn’t seek it out in the form of their brand of so-called “12 Step recovery”. Their INtolerance is NOT compatoible with my understanding of OA’s message of inclusiveness.

If the OA meeting(s) you attend do not sell Beyond Our Wildest Dreams, you can order it from OA’s World Service Office (www.oa.org). If you find yourself as enthusiastic as I am about this volume, then I hope you’ll ask your local group(s) to order some so other members can familiarize themselves with OA’s history.