Teen launches TEJA, a supplement brand for youth

By Danielle Masterson

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Teenagers Children immune support sleep supplements

After recognizing a white space, 13-year-old Sriteja Kataru came up with the concept for TEJA, a supplement brand for teens.

Kataru said his mother, an internal medicine doctor board-certified in lifestyle medicine, was a source of inspiration for him. Additionally, a visit to the doctor fired up entrepreneurial spirit. 

Early in his teens, Katari said he had gained some weight and his doctor suggested he keep an eye on his BMI. 

“Even though it wasn't a major issue, being a self-conscious teenager, I was like really alarmed by that. And in doing so, I rushed to the internet to find healthy snacks and tips on how to have a healthy lifestyle.”

However, Kataru didn’t find what he was looking for. Instead, he found snacks marketed as “healthy” but were packed full of sugar or artificial sweeteners. 

“People tend to buy them thinking that they're low calorie and healthy since they come from fruits like monk fruit extract or stevia, but the reality is that artificial sweeteners are not good for you at all. The recent research suggests that first of all, it kills your gut microbiome, which people are only finding now that your microbiome is so important for so many parts of your body,” explained Kataru. 

After doing some research and thinking about what format teens would like, Kataru settled on a gummy line he calls TEJA (Teenage Eating for Joyful Adulthood). 

“I chose immunity and sleep gummies to work with. I worked with two food scientists who were really good at what they do and I also did my own research and we did a lot of iterations, we did a lot of rounds, I did experimentation in the kitchen too. So after that we came with two really good products, immunity gummies and sleep gummies.”

Kataru said he mission is two-fold: “The first part is to sell gummies obviously but the second part is a huge emphasis on teen education and I want every teenager in the world to have the same nutrition knowledge as I do and as I was given. So that's what I also want to tell everyone too, that education is really important and that's also what TEJA does.”

Kataru’s fuels his passion for educating teens about the lifelong impact of lifestyle choices by collaborating with non-profits Healthier Kids Foundation and VTSeva to craft a 4-part nationwide health workshop that focuses on food, sleep, stress, and exercise—the core pillars of TEJA's mission. 

The company also donates a percentage of its profits to non-profit organizations that are aligned with TEJA’s mission towards improving children’s health and well-being across the United States.

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