Jersey City — For the last seven years, Janeth Garcia has owned a Herbalife nutrition club on Franklin Avenue in Jersey City Heights. But before the COVID-19 pandemic — hit affecting businesses all-around — Garcia noticed the business wasn’t doing too well.
“One of the main reasons was because a lot of it was blocked off,” said Diana Paredes-Garcia, daughter of Janeth, who helps at the club. “The company [Herbalife] had a lot of restrictions and there wasn’t a lot that we could do.”
After spending seven years getting certified with a nutrition license and consuming the products, it seemed unimaginable letting go of their small business. So the mother and daughter duo teamed up — with the help of the rest of the family – and reinvented their nutrition club into “Nutrition On The Hill.”
The new nutrition spot offers an array of shakes, crepes and acai bowls with fresh fruits and toppings. Each is made with formula protein and can be considered healthy meal alternatives, according to Paredes-Garcia.
“Our crepes are made completely out of protein,” said Paredes-Garcia. “Our acai bowls are made out of formula one protein, which is the same exact thing that we’re using instead of adding added sugars like Stevia.”
They’ve added “lift” refreshers to complement their colorful menu, which contains collagen and are only 20 calories.
Curating their new menu took trial and error to create the right products for their new and returning customers.
“We spent maybe two weeks going through products like food,” she stated. “We’d mix and match a lot of things… if we’re trying it and we’re like ‘Oh this doesn’t taste that good’ or there’s something off about it, chances are that the client is not going to like it.
But the items that made it to the menu withstood the taste test of their friends and family at their soft opening and the eager eyes on social media.
Before the official opening, Paredes-Garcia uploaded pictures of their shakes on social media and quickly realized it was catching the attention of their fellow community members.
“I would use #Jersey City Heights or #nutrition or #healthy and there were people within the area that were like ‘Oh what is this’ and we started getting a lot of followers,” said Paredes-Garcia, who realized how tight-knit the Jersey City community can be.
That tight-knit feel is what she hopes to bring to her customers when they enter “Nutrition on the Hill.” They wanted their new look to provide a “homey” space for the neighborhood where everyone could feel welcomed.
The carpets, plants and comfy chairs fit the warm and friendly vibe that’d make you feel right at home.
“We wanted her clients to feel better and come and have a shake or an acai bowl,” she told Slice of Culture. “.. If everyone’s enjoying it, everyone likes how their body is feeling or reacting to it, then that’s the ultimate goal.”