"Hungry Girl is not a nutritionist. She's just hungry. Lisa Lillien (a.k.a. Hungry Girl) is a New York Times best-selling author and the creatorunnamed-46 of the Hungry Girl brand. She is the founder of http://www.hungry-girl.com, a free daily email service that entertains and informs hungry people everywhere. Lisa is a typical woman battling the same food issues most females struggle with every day. She considers herself a “foodologist,” not because she has some kind of fancy degree, but because she is obsessed with food –– how wonderful it is, and how much of it she can eat and still fit into her pants."

We met with Hungry Girl, Lisa Lillien, to talk about her journey.

{SS}: Can you share a bit about the journey of how the business evolved into a national brand?Hungry-Girl-logo

{Lisa}: I've always been obsessed with food — and I have a knack for finding products that taste great that are low in calories and fat — and also ways to make food at home that tastes super-fattening but isn't. And I love to share my findings and ideas with people.

One day the idea for Hungry Girl popped into my brain – to create sort of an umbrella diet brand for women that was from a regular person (like me), as opposed to a doctor or a dietitian — and the brand needed to be FUN and a little sassy — not boring. 51QtelcE82L._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_So Hungry Girl was born… I decided to make it a free daily email service because I wanted the content to be delivered directly to them in a very personal way. This was back in 2004 before there were blogs — or even many email newsletters.

After I launched, the mailing list kept growing and growing — and all of the new business opportunities came due to the popularity of the daily emails.

{SS}: What is the best part about your job?

hungry-girl.top{Lisa}: There are so many things I love about it! Meeting HG fans face to face is the most fun. Being creative — and tasting food all day is incredible! And knowing that the work we do helps millions of people get healthier is the best and most satisfying thing I can imagine.

{SS}: Was there ever a time when you faced challenges with your business? You mentioned you didn't have a business plan.. can you give advice on how to work through business obstacles?

{Lisa}: Challenges come and go. The best thing you can do is surround yourself with smart people you trust — but always be hands on — and on top of any issues that arise and make decisions with a clear head. Get advice from everyone you trust — then follow your gut. 9780312676780_p0_v2_s260x420

{SS}:Do you have a favorite cookbook (out of the many) you have published?

{Lisa}: I love each of them for so many reasons. Hungry Girl to the Max is like the HG bible — and The Hungry Girl Diet Cookbook has the healthiest recipes of all of the books. So those two would be my favorites I think!

HG_Lisa-Lillien-preparing-tacos_s4x3.jpg.rend.sni18col{SS}: Any advice for those women trying to start their own businesses?

{Lisa}: Do something you love — and prepare to work extremely hard at it. If someone doesn't LOVE working– and I mean REALLY LOVE working, I would not advise them to start a business.

{SS}: What would you tell your 23 year old self?

{Lisa}: Don't always trust what others tell you. Do your own research about EVERYTHING. Don't worry so much about what other people think. And have lots of fun! Do what you love. Never allow yourself to have a "live for Friday" job...

SS}: YOUR secret to work / life balance?

{Lisa}: I always find time to exercise. And spend as much time as possible just hanging out at home.

{SS}: What is your go-to app?

{Lisa}: My go-to app is the Google app — it's the best!

Now onto your personal style…

{SS}: In regards to your personal style, do you have a signature accessory? 

{Lisa}: I have a thread bracelet with three small diamonds that I never take off. It was a gift from my husband (he bought it in London). I love it. I also have a necklace with charms — img-thingone is a Hungry Girl logo charm — my parents gave me that many years ago. I wear it all the time!

{SS}: A few items in your "Styleshack" A.K.A closet that you can't live without? (this can be something sentimental, your favorite T-Shirt or go-to outfit)

{Lisa}: I have tall black wedge boots that I am obsessed with. I love jeans so much and won't stop getting new ones. I have more jeans than probably any other human on the planet.

{SS}: Favorite local boutiques? 

{Lisa}: These days most of my favorite "boutiques" are online—shopbop, ruelala, gilt, bluefly. Those are MY local boutiques. You can't get much more local than shopping from your kitchen table! HA!  

{SS}: Favorite local restaurants? 

{Lisa}: Kazu sushi in Studio City, CA Moonstruck Diner in NYC Pete & Sam's in Memphis

{SS}: What is your go-to dish? 2013-02-12-03-56-02

{Lisa}: To prepare? Anything with broccoli slaw! You can do so many things with it — it's the best!  

{SS}: Currently listening to…  

{Lisa}: Lots of Ed Sheeran currently.  

{SS}: Words to Live by? 

{Lisa}: It is easier to wear slippers than it is to carpet the whole entire world.                                           Screen Shot 2015-06-09 at 2.37.49 PM

Learn More and Find Incredible Recipes by checking out Hungry Girl