By Yasmin Darsot Cassim

This month Irtiqa speaks to successful and dynamic entrepreneur, Khadeeja Gani, a one- of- a- kind woman with a zest for life and a passion for success!

Khadeeja’s journey began as a Springbok Gymnast Champion who always tried to lead a healthy life style. Sadly her career came to a grinding halt in 1996 when she started feeling ill often and was physically diminished to skin and bone. After numerous consultations and tests she was diagnosed with three debilitating auto-immune diseases including, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromyalgia and Multiple Sclerosis. Her battle with these diseases continued until 2004.  Khadeeja admits that being diagnosed with these conditions has changed her life forever, but believes that it did not kill her fighting spirit to succeed in life. She challenged herself to make the best of her situation.

After her diagnosis, she did research and started using Herbalife -before this she had dabbled in the fashion and image industry, but at the end found her voice in Herbalife. She believed in the success stories of the product greatly. Herbalife was founded in February 1980 by Mark Hughes and is now fruitfully used in 92 countries around the world. There are 72 of the world’s best doctors and scientists involved in its research, manufacturing and product development. Herbalife is listed on the New York stock exchange and has enjoyed whopping total retail sales of 7.5 billion dollars in the year 2013.

Herbalife is a nutrition company developed to support a healthy active lifestyle. Its product range covers supplements for meal replacement, targeted nutrition, as well as an outer skincare range that is both natural and vitamin and mineral based.

Footballer Cristiano Ronaldo is not only sponsored by the brand, but is a global nutrition partner involved in research and feedback to improve Herbalife products for athletes.

Khadeeja has gone from using Herbalife products to better her lifestyle, to coaching people and speaking at corporate wellness events, including networking with gyms, salons, sports clubs and medical professionals who embrace Herbalife and a healthy active lifestyle.

Her passion is to introduce families and individuals (struggling with nutritional challenges) to the Herbalife Formula 1 breakfast as well as empower them through her coaching by providing a holistic understanding of nutrition, balanced blood sugar energy levels and the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle.

“First and foremost, I build and educate teams of like-minded people to support others by doing the same countrywide and internationally in addition to providing value-added social media support, recognition, ongoing newsletters on nutritional topics, monthly challenges, product information and dedicated real- time whatsapp and Facebook group support daily”, she says.  Her mission is nutrition, good health and vitality. “As it is said, your first wealth is your health.”

I met up with Khadeeja at a team- building event held at the Zoo Lake in Johannesburg. The event was focused on recognizing the efforts everyone has made and the hard work they put in to achieve their goals. Khadeeja believes strongly in rewarding achievements and believes this is part of successful team-building. Khadeeja believes that she is in the empowerment business. She has engaged with women from all backgrounds and has witnessed the change in them since they have joined her team. According to her, each client has successfully overcome their unique situation and has bettered their lives. This is what she lives for and this is what motivates her to excel in what she does. She believes whole-heartedly in the product as well as the values and goals of Herbalife, she is now an independent distributor for Herbalife and dedicates all of her time to it. Herbalife allows each person the opportunity to become an independent member and provides an equal opportunity for anyone that wants to run their own business. She has plus minus 70 individuals in her team which she mentors, coaches and trains, but most importantly she treats her team like a family. She is compassionate and motivational whilst leaving room for fun she pushes her team to their limits and believes that each individual is here to serve a purpose.

One of her short-term goals is to be able to take her entire family for hajj (pilgrimage) and believes if she works hard enough and smart enough, with the help of the Almighty, she will be able to accomplish her goal.