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September 7, 2010 > Business Profile: Healthy living

Business Profile: Healthy living

By Simon Wong

Photo by Simon Wong

Unfortunately, a panacea for all ills does not exist. Good nutrition is merely part of a regimen for good health. Regular exercise, a balanced diet, proper rest, and lack of excess are also necessary for well-being.

Kraski's Nutrition relocated to new premises at 22475 Foothill Boulevard, Hayward, in mid-June, and enjoyed a formal Grand Opening and ribbon cutting with representatives from the Hayward Chamber of Commerce including Mayor Mike Sweeney, Councilmen Mark Salinas and Marvin Peixoto, and city staff on August 5, 2010.

Now owned by Elie Goldstein, Kraski's Nutrition has been a stalwart of the Hayward business community since 1949, founded by the Kraski family and sold to Goldstein's father in 1970.

"My older brother and I grew up in the store. As children, we spent vacations cleaning the premises and helped with odd jobs. That was how our father stopped us gallivanting," recalls Goldstein.

"Since 1970, our family has provided the community with nutritional advice and health foods. Our new location is more user-friendly with more parking at the back of the store. Customers can enter the shop from Foothill Boulevard at the front and from the parking lot at the rear. Previously, we only had street parking," he added.

In the 1970s, the health industry did not have the variety and choice that exists today. Technological and scientific advances have yielded more natural ingredients and solutions. For instance, South American rainforests and bark from trees that are indigenous to Africa are natural sources of nutrients beneficial for human consumption. Many cultures around the world have their own medical and nutritional heritages and there has been a growing collection of knowledge, understanding, and collaboration to bring the benefits to market in the form of new findings and expanded product lines.

Goldstein joined the business 25 years ago and has acquired an encyclopedic knowledge of nutrition, available products, the ingredients in their manufacture and their efficacy. The received wisdom about nutrition has evolved during that time and he has had to keep abreast of developments to serve his customers well. He reviews the latest technologies and nutritional supplements, as well as the research that supports the products before deciding what to offer his clients. Service and knowledge in this industry are key; customers, who hail from all over the Bay Area, readily acknowledge Goldstein's attention to detail, his ability to listen, his honesty, and levels of customer care. Kraski's Nutrition also visits local schools to discuss and educate young people about the importance of good health.

"At times, I almost feel like a doctor, albeit without the white coat. Many people seek advice but they have to understand that advice and dietary/nutritional supplements alone will not be enough. They must also be responsible for managing their own health. The 'American way' is to drive a few blocks. In other countries, people walk and there is greater use of good public transit," Goldstein explained.

Kraski's Nutrition offers nutritional counseling and the whole gamut of dietary supplements and healthier options such as pure juices, vitamins, minerals, oils, herbs, teas, body building products, vegetarian foods, natural foods, bulk grains, and weight loss products, developed by specialist companies rather than big-name pharmaceuticals. Such lines are unavailable in pharmacy, health food and grocery chain stores.

Additionally, Goldstein has developed three products - "Stable," "Nerve Support" and "Mega Chromium" - which aid diabetics with their health-management (visit Customers may purchase over-the-counter and by mail order. The shop also has a section of comprehensive, educational literature covering health matters.

"Nutritional advice is free, so people should seek it. If people wish to alter their lifestyles and improve their health, they shouldn't expect that change to be easy. Habits of a lifetime are difficult to break. Health is something at which people must work. The rewards are directly proportional to one's efforts and the harder they work at it, the better they will feel," concluded Goldstein.

Kraski's Nutrition is located at 22475 Foothill Boulevard, Hayward and can be reached by calling (510) 581-2608.

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