Just a “mom on a mission,” Katie Wells had one simple goal: cultivate a lifestyle that would give her children good health and many years of life.
She has turned that goal into a successful blog and podcast called Wellness Mama that gets 6 to 10 million page views each month, with an additional 2 million views on social media. She has written thousands of blog posts and has developed a podcast by the same name for those who prefer listening.
Wellness Mama’s genesis was in 2006. Katie was in the waiting room of her doctor’s office for her post-partum checkup. A long wait meant extra time to skim the magazines that lay nearby on the table.
A startling statistic in a copy of Time magazine caught her eye and broke her heart: For the first time in two centuries, the current generation of American children would have a shorter life expectancy than their parents.
Children were projected to experience more heart disease, more diabetes, and more cancer.
Katie was not OK with that statistic for her child, or anyone else’s child, and set out to do what she could to change it.
“It was such a striking moment as I was holding this perfect, tiny newborn, and then reading this article saying that his generation was going to have drastically higher rates of cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and autoimmune disease,” Katie says.
“With this inspiration of looking at my tiny baby, I resolved that day to help change that statistic. I had no idea how I would do it, but I wanted to help create a world where we could start changing those statistics back.”
Around the same time, Katie started experiencing some strange health concerns of her own. Initially she chalked it up to post-partum symptoms, but as years passed, the issues only got worse, causing deeper problems.
With a background in journalism, Katie’s default is always to begin researching. That began a multiyear effort to not only get to the bottom of her own health, but to also figure out how she could reverse this dreaded trend projected for her children.
Years later, Katie was diagnosed with an autoimmune disease called Hashimoto’s thyroiditis. By the Lord’s good grace and healing through years of lifestyle change, today her condition is in remission.
Moms are shaping the next generation and are controlling so much of the purchasing power, so that when they make changes, society listens.
Looking back, Katie now recognizes that her lifestyle prior to the start of her mysterious symptoms was a recipe for a major health crash. She was a college student getting little sleep, eating in the school cafeteria, feeling stress all the time, and, after graduation, immediately getting married and becoming pregnant.
“What a perfect storm for an autoimmune disease,” Katie says.
Katie also says she is grateful for the experience of marrying young and getting pregnant right away.
“I feel like I grew up with my husband, and we grew closer through building a business and building a family in those early years that can be so tough, together,” Katie says.
Since 2006, blogging has become one of the most fulfilling aspects of Katie’s life after her role as wife and mother. She says when writing, her goal is to “take really complex topics and make them easy to understand and actionable for moms, which would in turn pay off for families.”
“Every blog post strives to answer a single question that moms can easily implement without adding stress to their lives,” Katie says.
Over the years, Katie has both regained her own health and provided a healthy foundation for her children, all the while “watching an amazing community of millions of moms who also really care about changing the statistic for their kids, everybody else’s kids, and for future society as a whole.”
“I have always thought that moms are the most powerful force on the planet,” Katie says. “Anything you can do to help them and make their lives easier has ripple effects not just to their immediate families, but also through society. I want to help give moms back more time and more bandwidth.”
“Moms are shaping the next generation and are controlling so much of the purchasing power, so that when they make changes, society listens,” Katie declares.
When asked her vision for Wellness Mama, Katie says she ultimately wants to give people a foundation to stand on and building blocks to figure out what the best variables are for them. She is sure to preface any health advice she gives by saying that there is a very personalized aspect to health.
“We are all unique and created to move toward a natural state of health,” Katie says. “So I ask myself, ‘What variables can I remove or add to move my body to where it already wants to be?
“I have so much hope now when I think about that original statistic. If we have this many moms working toward the same goal, then we will change the outcome,” Katie says.
Katie has an inherent curiosity about every person she meets.
“You can gain wisdom from almost anyone and their own journeys,” she states. However, Katie also stresses the fact that someone else’s system might not work for you.
“At the end of the day, we are all responsible for our own health.” Katie says.