Dondeena Bradley, PepsiCo VP, Wants To Start A National Conversation About Women’s Health. With A Protein Drink.


Well+Good NYC has an interesting story on Dondeena Bradley, the PepsiCo Vice President and “Upper East Side mother” who is hoping to start a national conversation about women’s health. How’s she planning to do this? Well, with a new beverage marketed towards women. It’s called Wello.

Wello, Bradley says, will fill a nutritional gap for women, especially low-income women living in rural areas. Dondeena says:

“I think of the beverage just as an invitation for women to come into a conversation about unleashing their well-being, and then connect to each other.”

Bradley has a PhD in Foods and Nutrition and worked in medical food development before coming to Pepsi in 2007, so she has the chops to develop a nutrition drink geared towards women, or so it seems. But what makes her want to do something like this, especially when she works for a company that manufactures a product commonly cited as one of the biggest causes of obesity in American culture?

According to Well+Good, Bradley noticed that protein was often framed in masculine terms and that women were often missing out on its benefits. Lisa Elaine Held writes of Wello:

It served as the perfect metaphor for a larger framework that would support women’s wellness and empowerment. If protein provides physical power, bringing women together to talk about unleashing their potential provides empowerment. Both of which, Bradley says, are essential to well-being. “From my perspective, it’s emotional, physical, and spiritual,” she says.

Bradley’s heart certainly seems to be in the right place. And who’s to say that it won’t be Big Food people who might eventually change our food landscape? It’s refreshing to see a woman who brings her personal convictions into her work life. And to Bradley’s credit, her interview with Well+Good reveals that she realizes that having the money and resources of Pepsi behind her positions her mission and her product for a success pretty much unachievable if she were working for a smaller company or a start-up. I’m not laying out the laurels just yet, though—let’s see what happens once Wello is actually available to the public (the website looks pretty fun and playful!)

Photo: TedXTalks


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