“I’ve been in the business since I was a baby,” says Robert Sepe Jr., executive vice president of Healthy ’N Fit Nutritionals. And he’s not exaggerating: In 1976, his family ran a small health-food store in the Bronx, N.Y., before founding Healthy ’N Fit in the early ’80s. “We started creating our own formulations and producing our own innovative products, and now we do our own manufacturing, packaging and distribution,” Sepe says. While his father is no longer involved with the business, his mother remains the owner and CEO.
Catering to professional and casual gym-goers, athletes and bodybuilders, Sepe describes the average Healthy ’N Fit customer as “label readers who know what ingredients they do and don’t want in their supplements.” In fact, he calls them downright discriminating — a trait that makes him proud. “Our corporate philosophy is to keep our products as natural and healthy as possible while still maintaining efficacy,” Sepe says. “Our customers respect our brand because we avoid unhealthy and unsafe ingredients.”
It’s those same safe ingredients that keep customers coming back for more. “I’ve seen fads come and go,” Sepe says. “It’s easy to use fancy advertising to get customers to buy a product once. But it’s hard to get them coming back year after year, decade after decade. And some of our best-sellers have been so for more than 25 years. We earn new customers when they compare ingredients, purity and potency to our competition.”
Anabolic Amino 10,000 — which has been a top seller for more than 20 years — has always featured the same level of quality and potency and has always been made with amino acids naturally derived from whey and egg albumen. The product was considered innovative when it was introduced in 1985 because it was one of the first amino-acid products that used correct proportion technology for its amino-acid profile. As Sepe points out, other brands have recently reduced potency and used lower-quality and less-expensive ingredients (such as gelatin and soy) in order to cut costs.
Healthy ’N Fit does occasionally find the need to make modifications to its products, even those that have stood the test of time. Take, for instance, 100% Egg Protein, one of the company’s oldest products. The original product was dried egg whites. While it was a great source of protein, it was difficult to mix without a blender, didn’t contain any flavors or sweeteners, and taste was lacking. Today, Sepe says the product is instant, so that it can be mixed easily with a spoon, is available in five flavors and three sizes, and is naturally flavored and sweetened for a delicious-tasting product. The current formula has several supporting nutrients, such as natural digestive enzymes (papain and bromelain) and egg peptides (hydrolyzed egg protein).
While all Healthy ’N Fit’s products are backed by a 100-percent money-back guarantee, Sepe says they have a return rate of less than one-tenth of one percent. “Our customers aren’t looking for hype,” he says. “They are looking for the science behind products, ingredients and results.”