Autumn Valjien

I’m a UX Designer with an eclectic background in food, management, and addiction treatment. Before making my way to User Experience design, I spent much of my life working in the service industry from the line to the floor and eventually to the office. Then, I found my way into addiction treatment by way of food, and became the house chef for a sober living facility in Malibu, California. I eventually became the lead counselor and house manager of that same sober living facility, all while retaining the house chef role. I have always been someone who felt driven to do everything, I wanted to be a chef, an artist, a healer and a creator. More than anything I have known that whatever I do, I want to make a positive impact. 

My Story

All the roads I have taken have led me here, to My Sage Body, a concept that came to me while trying to mend my relationship with food after a lifetime of disordered eating. There was a lot of guilt and shame around food and the way my body looked. I was the only person in my family who wasn’t naturally rail thin; I have always been the one with “bad genes.” My self worth was tied to how little I could eat and in turn how little I could be.

So, when I suffered from my first flare of Hashimoto’s thyroiditis in my mid twenties and put on 60 pounds in 3 months my entire identity came crashing down. Suddenly I couldn't lose weight no matter what I did. My body clung onto every single calorie for dear life, and it was terrifying. I had put so much value into being thin, that this felt like the worst thing that could happen to me. The “Monica used to be fat, and we all hated her” plot-line of Friends played over and over in my head. I put my body at risk daily by under-eating, over-exercising, purging, and my body didn’t change. I felt cursed.

After years of internal struggle, I was tired. How do women live their lives, find love, and feel whole without the external validation of thinness? I truly didn’t know, but I wanted to be like them. I wanted to feel happy and whole, in this body. I wanted to feel finished, not like a “work in progress.” This meant I had to face my own fat-phobia head on, and find my self-worth which was something I had never had. What I had was an abusive relationship with self, and food restriction was my weapon of choice. This meant that repairing my relationship with self meant repairing my relationship with food. Doing so saved my life.

My mom always said “I know how to diet, I just don’t know how to eat.” When I began my journey I had no idea how to eat. All the information out there was conflicting. Every tracking app was so triggering, it made me want to “beat the clock” with calories. I couldn’t help myself but to under-eat every time I saw that number. Every single product out there was focused on weight loss. It was so difficult for me to get to a place of harmony with food. I was blown away that there was nothing out there available to people who simply wanted to live healthy nourished lives, and not lose weight. The only alternative was a pen and paper.

That’s when the concept for My Sage Body was born. I designed the app that I needed. A tracking app that doesn’t count weight or calories. It brings value by giving people tangible feedback on how the food they’re eating will impact their lives. It reflects back to them how their habits can influence their mood and body. It takes into account physical and mental health, and empowers people to listen to and trust their bodies rather than be at war with them. On the road to self acceptance and food freedom we offer no shame, no triggers, education, self-empowerment, feedback, and support. 

My Sage Body is made for those looking to build a loving, healthy relationship with food and exercise based on what is right for them, and their body.

Contact

I'm always looking for collaborators who believe in the cause, and want to be a part of our nutrition revolution.

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