Folks, today we get to talk with one of the most knowledgeable yet down-to-earth women you will ever meet in the health and nutrition world. Katie Wells from wellnessmama.com has built a hugely successful website on healthy living and healthy lifestyle choices. What started out as just a small blog has now grown into an icon. It is now one of the most viewed health sites on the net and really is the only one of its kind. If you haven’t visited wellnessmama yet, then I guarantee that once you do you will bookmark this site so you can return to it again and again. It really is that good! Katie is extremely busy at the moment (not just with “wellness mama” but also her 5 very young kids!) but she still agreed to do this interview and we sincerely thank her for her generosity and time.
So let’s now hear from Katie and discover some interesting insights into this fascinating woman in this delightful and enlightening interview…
1. Hi Katie. Thanks for joining us today. It’s really great to be doing an interview with you because my wife and I have been fans of wellnessmama for a long time. So could you start by telling us how you actually began on your “Wellness Mama” journey and how you came up with the name?
I had been meeting with clients one-on-one but with kids. This was getting more difficult. I started blogging as a way to share recipes and health info with them while still at home with my kids. In looking for a domain name, I wanted something that included “Wellness” since I think health is so much more than just diet or just fitness, and the Mama was because I am first a wife and mom (and the domain was available).
2. What I love most about wellnessmama is it’s such a down-to-earth website… that’s the only way I can describe it. No fancy rubbish. You write on a “me-to-you” type basis and it works! So do you think this is one of the reasons why your website has become so popular (besides the fact that you really do have great material)? The way I look at it, people see you as a friend and can relate to you so they listen.
I hope so! I really try to focus on what I call my “coffee with friends rule” when writing. Basically, I try to write everything as if I were having coffee with my best friend or sister and write how I would talk to her. I’ve enjoyed so much getting to know some of my readers and I do hope that they can think of me as a friend.
3. Your home made recipes are my wife’s favourites. Home-made tooth paste, magnesium body butter, healthy fruit snacks, you even have a meal planner section… So where do you find all of this stuff? Are you willing to share your secret?
I’m a total dork. I love experimenting with new recipes and finding new or easier ways to make things. I’ve certainly had a lot of failed recipes over the years and I like sharing the ones that work so my readers can avoid the mistakes I made.
4. I’ve noticed that you reply to a lot of your reader’s posts and questions on your website (and there are plenty of them). I think that’s another reason why wellnessmama is so popular. But this must take up an awful lot of your time. You obviously enjoy doing this though and find it important?
Back to the “coffee with friends rule”. I try as much as possible to respond to emails and questions. Readers are taking their time to read my blog and it is one of thousands they could choose from. I try to make time to respond and help when I’m able (though I am about 500 emails behind right now, so I appreciate their patience too!)
5. Katie, you have over 170 000 followers on Facebook and even Dr Mercola follows you on Twitter so you must be doing something very right! So are you surprized at just how big it’s all got? And it seems to just keep on growing!
I didn’t even know Dr. Mercola follows me on Twitter. I need to get better at using Twitter (anyone have suggestions?). I am surprised, but I think it just shows how important the information is right now. We’re seeing rapidly rising rates of health problems and disease, and I think a lot of people are searching for answers. Like I said, I’ve had to learn a lot of this the hard way, and I hope that my site is a resource to save others the time and hassle! I think the growth is largely due to the message and the great community that has grown around WellnessMama.com.
6. You have 5 kids under the age of 7 and yet you still have time to do all of this? I’m amazed. How?
Structure and consistency. I plan every day down to the hour, from meal planning, to school time with the kids, to time to relax. I also don’t have much free time or watch much TV… reading medical journals, creating recipes and blogging are my hobbies so it helps that I love it.
7. How did you go speaking recently at the Virtual Real Food Conference? You said you were nervous beforehand but the comments after were really positive. I thought you did great.
Thanks! It was such a fun opportunity. It got me out of my comfort zone, as I usually like sitting behind my computer and writing, but Sean is so wonderful and it ended up being a lot of fun. I also think that Real Food Con is a great resource and I’m glad to have had the chance to contribute.
8. Okay, I have to bring it up Katie. This whole banana hate thing. I mean, seriously, you would rather eat raw liver than bananas! You can’t be serious? Liver’s just plain disgusting! I love bananas and could live off them no problem at all so I’m having a hard time getting my head around someone who can’t even stand to be near bananas…
Haha… I know, right? I don’t know why I have such a problem with bananas. I think I ate too many as a kid and I also have a latex allergy and some people with latex allergies also don’t do well with bananas, so maybe my body is just being smart on this one. I don’t love liver either, but it is so healthy that I make it a priority. Since bananas aren’t that nutrient dense, it's easy not to have to make myself like them...
9. I saw the “8 Amazing Women Who Are Making a Difference” article and you were one of the 8. Things like that must make you realize that you’re doing something good, that you’re on the right path?
I hope so. Like I said, at the end of the day, I’m just trying to help change health/nutrition (especially for moms and families) since I think this will have a huge impact on the next generation. Without getting all cliche, the children are our future, and I we need to make some serious changes to make sure the next generation can be healthy.
10. So very true Katie. Now for my final question I would like to ask you what’s on the cards for yourself and wellnessmama the future? Do you have any new endeavours in the pipeline or anything new you are planning to add to wellnessmama?
I’m working on updating my meal planning system so that I can open it to new users. It will feature the ability to build meal plans or use pre-planned meals. Meal planning has made a huge difference for our family, so I’m trying to share these with others. I’m also in the final stages of launching wellness-media.com which will be a resource to help other bloggers with the same message grow. My biggest priority is getting the message out and I can’t do it alone so I’m helping other bloggers learn from my trial and error and grow their blogs so we can collectively reach a wider audience.
Wow. Cant wait for that. Sounds terrific!
Well Katie, I would like to take this opportunity to once again say a big “thank you” for joining us today and answering our questions. We really do appreciate it.
We would also like to encourage our readers to check out wellnessmama if they haven’t already done so. You can also follow Katie on Twitter and “liking” wellnessmama on Facebook is an absolute must if you want to keep up-to-date with all of the latest posts and articles as soon as they are released. So all the best for the future Katie and we look forward to reading more great material from wellnessmama.com in the future. Thanks again.