'She Pivots' With Nitika Chopra: Finding Strength in Her Chronic Illness

The wellness entrepreneur believes in the power of community.

Nitika Chopra
(Image credit: Future)

In partnership with Marie Claire, 'She Pivots' challenges the typical definitions of success and explores the role our personal stories play in our professional journeys.

From a young age, Chopra knew something was wrong with her health.

“I was 10…within probably about a year, I went from having like a dime-sized spot on my left arm to basically being covered [in scales] from the tip of my foot to the tip of my head,” Chopra tells me when I sat down to chat with her for She Pivots.

Diagnosed with psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis—both autoimmune diseases—by the age of 19, Chopra spent decades suffering physically and emotionally due to her health challenges. But when Chopra began to host a television show on the South Asian network, Z Living, she found freedom in being able to talk about her skincare journey publicly.

“I'm super proud of the fact that, even though I had all that going on with my health, that they still saw that I was the right person for it, and I think it's good to remember that,” says Chopra. “When you're meant for something, it'll happen.”

As her career grew, Chopra realized that the most powerful conversations happened when she brought her identity as a chronic illness advocate to the forefront. 

“Every time I said that I was a chronic illness advocate, I had the most meaningful, important, and the most moving connections with people,” she says. “I had never experienced that in my entire career. It was something that was so, so new. And it was like the thing I was looking for. It was why I wanted to do this in the first place.”

From that desire to engage with other people with chronic illness, Chronicon, a community for those living with chronic illness, was born.

“I think the more that we can celebrate that [chronic illness] and shine a light on it, I really do think that inherently that is healing, right?” says Chopra about the mission behind Chronicon. “And maybe not in the end result way that people typically talk about healing, like I'm going to fix your psoriasis or something. But in a deeper cellular, spiritual, emotional way that I think is really important.”

Tune in below to hear more about Chronicon (including this year’s annual conference, happening May 19), Chopra’s decision to not have kids, and her singing career with the Resistance Revival Chorus on She Pivots.

Emily Tisch Sussman
Contributing Editor

Emily Tisch Sussman is the Founder and Host of “She Pivots,” the podcast in partnership with Marie Claire about women, their stories, and how their pivot became their success. She is a contributing editor to Maire Claire and the guest host of the Marie Claire Instagram Live series “Getting Down to Business.”