Studies show that one in five women suffers from an eating disorder or disordered eating. Could you be one of them? Read Kelly's story to find out.

Kelly was a happy and content teenager with no real "issues" at home. It was her search for significance, however - her desperation to find herself - that led her down a dark path of eating disorders that threatened to take her life.

Kelly was active in sports and cheerleading and involved in just about every social club on her high school campus. She was a fast runner and that soon became her identity. But during a cheerleading competition her senior year, she fell during one of the routines and broke her ankle. Endless doctor visits brought an end to her track career and any hopes of college scholarships. 

"All these changes began to scare me," Kelly said.  "Who was I?  If running was my identity, and it was why people liked me, what would happen if that was taken away?"

She began to fear that she would gain weight, because, for the first time in her life, she wasn't active.  So she began to diet, but it soon became obsessive. 

"I started to lose a lot of weight and gain attention from my family and friends; attention that I desired so much."

Her dieting spiraled to a downhill path of full-blown eating disorders.  When she graduated from high school, she had no idea what to do, which compounded her fear and her addiction.

"I felt like the rug was being yanked out from under me," she said.

A week after her high school graduation, she accepted Christ as her Personal Savior, after listening to some friends who had been sharing the Gospel with her for several months.  That Fall, she moved away to attend college a few hours from her home.  But her newfound faith didn't solve her eating disorder. 

"My eating disorders got worse and worse.   I didn't understand that I could call on the Lord for help.  I just figured I could ‘fix' this problem; I could get over this all by myself.  I sank deeper and deeper into a black prison of endless cycles of eating and throwing up, or starving myself. I bounced from Anorexia to bulimia.  No one knew how to help me. I told everyone I was fine.  I even fooled some people. But I never fooled God. I was depressed, discouraged and distraught.  I really did want help, but knew if I asked for help, I would be made to eat, so I couldn't risk it. I felt like I was looking at the world through prison bars, watching the happy people live their lives, dreaming that I could be one of them someday. It didn't even seem to stem from a desire to be liked, or for attention and identity anymore. It was simply a bondage that was wrapped around me like a glove."

When she moved back home to have her foot operated on, she began attending a local Bible-believing church and developed a hunger to read and study the Bible for herself. "I began to understand who God was, what sin was, and how a holy God viewed ugly sin," she said.  

As she was reading Psalms 51:3-4, her heart was convicted. 

"It was at that moment that I realized that what I was doing was sin.  My body; my self, had become my idol. I was in control of my life, not God. Every time I chose to not eat, or throw up, I was sinning against God, and was breaking His heart."

That day she finally surrendered her life to Jesus Christ and gave Him control of every area of her life.

"I cried out to God for forgiveness and strength to help me overcome this addiction.  He forgave me that night. He gave me strength to fight the battle against my addiction.  It was a struggle to make the right choices, but God helped me every step of the way. It was a long, upward climb, but God did it.  Jesus delivered me from darkness and despair into His glorious light and I am forever grateful!"