“At Wellory, we’re taking a completely different approach, by focusing on qualitative nutrition over quantitative tracking.”
We speak to Emily Hochman, the founder, and CEO of Wellory, a startup app that takes an “anti-diet” to nutrition and dieting.
Dieting isn’t for everyone. That’s what founder Emily Hochman realized when she was 22 years old, searching for a solution to her health conditions through different diets. When none of them worked for her, she discovered the concept of bio-individuality, which led to her start her science-backed nutrition and wellness app, Wellory. We speak to Hochman on her personal wellness journey, what to expect as a first-time user of the app, and prospects for the brand.
Q: Could you tell us about your journey to wellness and how you got into nutrition?
A: I was 22 years old when I found myself struggling with food and a growing list of medical diagnoses. As an active individual who tried dieting for a number of years and trying everything from gluten-free diets to Keto, it was hard for me to accept that I had polycystic ovarian syndrome and hyperthyroid disorder, in addition to being pre-diabetic. This meant that I may never have children and the only way to get my health better was to take regular medication.
I spent three to four years looking into finding a better solution for my health, before discovering something called bio-individuality, which is the idea that one person’s food, is another person’s poison. Miraculously through years of studying this method, I was able to cure myself through the power of food as medicine and really understanding how everything I put in my body affects my health.
Q: What are the biggest nutrition “myths”?
A: The “one-size-fits-all” diet. That just simply does not exist. Every human body is different and has to be treated differently. We can’t subscribe to the diets that promote “do this” or “don’t do that” without fully understanding their customers and their needs.
Q: What is/are your main goal(s) with Wellory?
A: Our main goal is to help as many people as possible have a healthy relationship with food. We want to help you learn how to eat healthily and prioritize your nutrition so you can live longer. If we do our job right at Wellory, we’ll be able to significantly lower the number of people who get sick every single year from diet-related disease and significantly reduce healthcare costs in the U.S. The facts are real and horrifying: the #1 cause of mortality in the United States is poor diet. According to a recent case study, 88% of Americans are considered at high-risk of COVID-19 due to diet-related disease. We need to get to the cause of illness by helping our nation prioritize eating healthy first and foremost. Our hope is to help as many people as possible learn how to prioritize their nutrition while giving them the support and guidance they need to make real behavior change.
Q: How do you unwind after a long week?
A: The last few months, I’ve been enjoying time with my new puppy, Rupert, and sipping a nice glass of red wine.
Q: What is your go-to quick dinner?
A: I recently got an Instant Pot and that has been a game-changer for me. In under 10 minutes, I can have a warm cooked meal. My go-to is usually a veggie medley which comprises sweet potatoes, zucchini, onions, garlic, and ginger.
Q: Where do you find inspiration for your work?
A: From those who have built before me. I’ve listened to so many of the “How I Built This” podcasts and love learning from experienced entrepreneurs.
Q: What does your “anti-diet” approach mean?
A: With a distinct anti-diet approach to nutrition, we’re disrupting an antiquated nutrition space. For years, food apps have focused on meticulous ingredient logging, calorie counts, macros, and do’s and don’ts when it comes to what we eat. At Wellory, we’re taking a completely different approach, by focusing on qualitative nutrition over quantitative tracking. And at the core of what we do, we are strong. We encourage one-on-one human relationships between our coaches and our clients.
Q: What can a user expect when using the Wellory app?
A: One of the biggest benefits users can expect to see from the app is that we are relationship-driven, with a meal-by-meal approach, paired with photo-sharing. The Wellory app is a simple but powerful tool that helps Wellory health coaches identify opportunities to make nutrition recommendations. This helps clients stay accountable to their new habits and track progress over time.
Q: You recently made it on the list of Forbes 30 Under 30 2021 – congratulations! What do you hope to pursue next for Wellory?
A: Thank you, it was definitely a highlight of my career so far! At Wellory, we are constantly looking for ways to make personalized nutrition accessible for all. We will continue to prioritize teaching consumers how to make better nutritional choices to decrease obesity rates, chronic illness, and increase life expectancy. While we can’t share the nitty-gritty, I will say that we are hiring for a ton of roles in early 2021 to help with the expansion of product offerings and partnership opportunities with some incredible companies. We will also be adding new tech developments and updates to the app’s functionality. Plus, a few really exciting products launching soon!