Meet registered dietitians Wendy Lopez and Jessica Jones, co-founders of the multimedia platform Food Heaven, a one-stop-shop for inclusive and accessible wellness.
“We didn’t see ourselves represented in nutrition and wellness and wanted to create an inclusive community that celebrated all people,” Lopez and Jones told WrapWomen.
What started out as a YouTube channel with just a couple of viewers (specifically Lopez and Jones’ parents) has morphed into an amazing YouTube community with a following of over 40,000 subscribers. They also offer unique recipes and friendly blog articles on their website. Throughout the years, Lopez and Jones’ platform – and hairstyles – have evolved, but their basic philosophy has remained the same: healthy eating should be delicious, cost-effective, and (most importantly) easy.
Most recently, the BFFs launched the “Food Heaven” podcast, which is perfect for the healthy gal on the go! Produced by Dear Media, the series dives into topics like health at every size, food and culture, intuitive eating, and body acceptance. During an interview with WrapWomen, Lopez and Jones opened up about their journey, took us behind the scenes of the podcast and shared tips for healthy living.
This podcast for the girl who loves…
JONES: Eating! But also taking care of herself.
This podcast is for the girl who is looking…
LOPEZ: To develop a healthy, nourishing and enjoyable relationship with food
3 words to describe this podcast are…
JONES: Relatable, non-judgmental, gentle wellness
How important is having a sustainable diet?
JONES: Our clients often don’t realize that restrictive diets aren’t sustainable, which means they can’t do them long term, which means they are always jumping from one way of eating to the next. Having a diet that is sustainable–and includes enjoying “fun” foods–is the only way to make balanced eating a lifelong endeavor.
What separates you from other health podcasts?
JONES:We look at everything from an inclusive lens. Not only culturally inclusive but also inclusive of people of different body shapes and sizes, because we all have the right to pursue health.
On a scale of 1-10, how hard is it for you guys to stay healthy?
LOPEZ: 8. Healthy looks different for me depending on the day, and I try to honor however I’m feeling whether that means eating mac and cheese for breakfast or eating a salad for dinner. Listening to my body and having that balance, even if that doesn’t look like what most people would think as healthy, is healthy for me.
Are fad diets even close to the right idea?
JONES: Never. Research shows that for the majority of people, diets don’t work and can have psychological, social, and physical side effects. This is why we take an intuitive eating approach to food and nutrition (meaning choosing what to eat based on how you’re feeling, how you want to feel, and what you’re actually in the mood for.)
Has quarantine made it harder or easier to eat healthy?
LOPEZ: Both. Sometimes I’m super inspired to be in the kitchen whipping up all types of meals, and sometimes I forget to eat. I’ve been gentle with myself by removing judgment and taking things day by day.
What does it mean to you to be healthy?
JONES: For us, all foods fit in a healthy diet. If your health is something that is important to you (BTW your health doesn’t have to be something that is important to you), balance is key. We also love to talk about how health is so much more than food – it includes our mental health, emotional health, financial health, environmental health, and so on.
What’s your go-to piece of advice for someone who wants to get healthy?
LOPEZ: Mute out what everyone else is telling you healthy is, and redefine how that would look like long-term for you.
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