HiveFit’s Raul Hiteshew talks ingredient transparency and how to make healthy choices for your family.
By Carrie Whitney
Although you do your best to eat healthy foods and supplement your diet with vitamins or maybe protein powder, without a chemistry degree, it can be a challenge to know whether the ingredients in your shake or capsule are best for your body. In some cases, ingredients may not be beneficial, and in others, they can be downright harmful. Whether it’s bloating from hidden lactose in whey powder or a pre-training product that leads to a crash, negative effects may have you eschewing supplements all together or thinking they are only meant for serious body builders.
Behind the Label
Considering the issues his clients faced when choosing supplement products, Atlanta-based health and fitness expert, Raul Hiteshew, along with fitness competitor wife, Ashlyn, decided to revolutionize the industry by offering a line of products that are truly healthy and appropriate for all ages and fitness levels. Instead of hiding behind complex ingredients and unrecognizable terms, Raul’s HiveFit supplement line displays 100 percent transparent labeling and a commitment to a lot of “nos”—no artificial flavors, no added sugars, no hormones or antibiotics, no genetically modified organisms (GMOs), and no fillers.
“When I designed the product, I designed it for everyone—moms, dads, and kids. Families really gravitated toward what we were doing here,” Raul says. His goal was to create a high quality yet affordable product for the masses. “Sometimes people think they are healthy because of the way they look, but really, they might be super toxic.” Raul’s products offer people top-notch ingredients that make them feel good on the inside and look good on the outside.
Consider whey protein powder. Not only do many companies add artificial colors, sweeteners and fillers to their products, they may also claim to have isolate protein, but it may not be 100 percent isolate. By contrast, Raul’s Whey Protein Vanilla and Chocolate powders contain 100 percent isolate, which minimizes lactose and maximizes absorption. The powder has no added sugars or binders. In fact, the Vanilla powder contains just three ingredients: 100 percent whey protein isolate, natural vanilla bean flavor, and stevia. Raul has even included the amounts of the ingredients on the labels, which means his formula could be copied, but he would rather see more ethical products on the market than hide anything. His 100 percent transparency labeling campaign is rare. “If you have a good product, you don’t need extra flavors or fillers. Anyone could make the products I have; there are no proprietary blends.” Raul’s HiveFit line ranges from protein powders to Probiotic Digestive Supplements and everything in between.
Born in Venezuela, and known in fitness competition circles as Mr. Venezuela, Raul got his start in the industry more than a decade ago when he joined the team at a supplement company. After gaining experience working with naturopathic doctors, studying science and psychology and earning a variety of competition titles and fitness certifications, he struck out on his own to bring the “Raul Approach” to clients.
“It was just me trying to lose fat because I was tired of roller coasting and trying every diet that came out,” he says. “From a competitor’s background, you always look to see what is the most effective, what works.” When he needed healthful products to provide to clients along with custom nutrition plans, Raul realized he would have to develop his own supplements if he wanted to confidently know they were made to the highest standards.
And now, thanks to Raul’s passion and experience, the HiveFit supplement line currently offers nine high-quality nutrition, fitness, and wellness products.
HiveFit Foundation— Helping the Hungry
While dieting strictly to prepare for a competition, Raul Hiteshew complained to his wife, Ashlyn, that he was “starving.” She quickly pointed out that he deprived himself of calories by choice, but there were children around the world who were actually starving. In that moment, the seed of HiveFit Foundation was planted.
HiveFit has committed 25 percent of all profits from HiveFit supplements to the HiveFit Foundation.
The Foundation serves to alleviate hunger in youth populations suffering from famine and malnutrition.
Raul developed special meal replacement formulas that can be easily digested by children with compromised digestive systems.
Together with international and local partners, the HiveFit Foundation provides highly nutritious liquid products to help children regain health in times of starvation.
Raul and the HiveFit Foundation plan to provide on-site distribution of meal replacement products among the populations they serve.