Getting healthy is always a good thing. For model Danika Brysha, it launched a career. In fact, it launched two.
Danika is a plus-size model. Several years ago, she realized she was suffering from an eating disorder when she decided to take matters into her own hands. "I always felt like if I could lose this amount of weight, I could be a model," she said. "I had a really bad eating disorder and always struggled with food." Eventually, she stopped dieting and embraced her normal size — around a 10 or 12 — and was approached at a bank about plus-size modeling.
"It was really cool to see that after struggling to be this person that I wasn't for so long, when I finally settled and was like, 'Screw it, I'm going to be who I am,' and just be my natural size, then that dream of mine that I always wanted came true without having to hurt my body to do it," she said.
Danika's career took off pretty quickly. At one point, though, she felt compelled to take The Whole 30 challenge to eliminate issues she was experiencing with her body. "After the 30 days, it was like, someone switched a light and I was in version two of my life." Her skin changed, she was more alert and energized, and she felt good — which is what she attributes to sticking with the program and changes. "This time around it was coming from self-love, not self-hate; I want to change it."
Danika changed her lifestyle and was feeling great. She had lost 30 pounds on the program, but as a plus-size model, it cost her her livelihood. "I went from making really great money modeling to crickets," she said. That's when Model Meals, her meal delivery service was born. "I had been sharing my journey on social media and was sharing my recipes and health tips. People were responding to it, and I kept getting the same questions over and over," said Danika. Most questions revolved around how to eat clean and how to keep it budget-friendly. She started cooking meals in her apartment in New York and delivering them around the city. "[Model Meals] is obviously a play on modeling, because it changed my hair and my skin and my nails and made me feel more beautiful, but it was also about being a role model. Modeling a cleaner way of eating and taking care of yourself."
Danika is now signed with IMG Models and is continuing her modeling career in addition to growing Model Meals. Visit ModelMeals.com to learn more about Danika's service, and watch the full episode to hear more about Danika's inspirational journey.