Story by JK Devine Photos by Scott Rogers
VITALITY AGELESS CENTER
Hours: 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through
Friday and 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday
Address: 112 Bradford St. NE, Gainesville
Phone number: 678-971-2081
For more than a decade, Maria Fleming has been a regular customer of businesses operated by Tanya Grizzle. Fleming started with a single body wrap and later enjoyed facials. As Grizzle’s business evolved into cosmetic procedures and other health-related treatments, Fleming became a faithful client. About five years ago, she had liposuction. “I worked in the corporate world of sales and interacted with clients a lot,” she said. “Looking good and feeling good was a big thing, but the stress was killing me.”
Then Grizzle approached Fleming with a surprising business opportunity more than a year ago. As a partner and co-owner of Vitality Ageless Center, Grizzle wanted to expand the business from its Duluth location in Gwinnett County to a second office in Gainesville. “Last July, Tanya Grizzle called me and asked if I wanted to be part of this new business venture,” Fleming said. “I went to my office and gave my two weeks’ notice.”
Fleming did not know how that single action would change her life. Shortly into the partnership, Grizzle and Fleming attended a training conference when Grizzle noticed Fleming appeared sluggish and lacked energy. Grizzle suggested Fleming consider the BioTE hormone replacement therapy, which is offered at Vitality. Fleming agreed. Once they returned home, Fleming underwent some tests including blood work.
For a woman in her 50s, the regular amount of testosterone in her body should have averaged between 150 and 250. Fleming’s level was at a five. Grizzle said this is a common occurrence in women 40 and older. “I don’t think I’ve ever seen women older than 40 whose hormone levels are good,” she said. “And it explains why we are tired and worn out all the time.” Grizzle then put Fleming on a regular BioTE hormone replacement therapy to correct the imbalance. The procedure involves inserting a BioTE pellet in the fatty tissue underneath the skin two to four times each year.
The pellet, which is smaller than a grain of rice, provides a slow and steady release of hormones. Fleming noticed a difference and over time her health improved in various areas. For example, she had been taking 14 pills to combat prediabetes, high blood pressure and high cholesterol as well as medications to deal with those medications’ side effects. “I had gotten up to 200 pounds. I was unhappy and overweight and felt bad,” Fleming said. “Since I’ve been on BioTe since August 2018. I’m down to 153 pounds and wear a size 8.”
She has also regained energy, causing her husband to have trouble keeping up with her newfound zeal. Therefore, he started hormone replacement therapy, too. “It totally transformed me,” she said. Transforming their clients is one purpose of Vitality Ageless Center. “We want to rejuvenate people on the outside and on the inside,” Grizzle said, adding she and the staff of registered nurses and a licensed physician are doing that one client at a time.
“Everyone doesn’t like something that they see in the mirror,” Grizzle said. “If you make them feel good on the outside, they become more lively and confident and feel better on the inside.” Those words have proven true for Gayla Younge of Flowery Branch and Cherie Haun of Gainesville. Both are regular clients of Vitality. Younge, 54, has received Botox injections and Juvederm fillers to counteract her weight loss related to her illnesses, including cancer. She said currently she weighs about 77 pounds on her 5-foot-4 frame. “I walked out of the hospital with a lot of saggy skin on my face,” she said. “They filled my face with filler so I didn’t look and feel like a skeleton.”
Younge explained while the treatments such as Botox, Juvederm and facials improve her physical appearance, the time she spends with her nurses at Vitality improves her emotional wellbeing. “The nurses are great,” Younge said. “I love the staff so much. We are very close, and they know me when I call.”
Haun feels the same way about Grizzle and the Vitality nurses, who are extensively trained on all of the medical equipment and procedures. She said her regular visits to receive Botox injections and other treatments acted as a respite while her husband was dying from Parkinson’s disease. She said the treatments helped her feel better, which had a ripple effect on her husband. “He couldn’t believe I kept looking so good,” Haun said. “My husband always said ‘You are so beautiful.’ It made him happy to see me happy. And that made me happy.”
Now, Haun and Younge are happy Vitality has opened a new location in downtown Gainesville. Both said they will no longer have to fight traffic in Duluth to undergo treatments. “I went to the new location for the first time on Nov. 12 and it was fabulous!” Haun said. “They are going to help so many people.” Helping people is Vitality’s mission, Grizzle said. “We want to educate people on how to age healthier and happier, and that’s our goal,” she said.
Customers of Vitality must undergo a specific process before receiving any treatments or services. The stepby- step process involves a consultation, medical history workup, diagnosis and treatment options. Once treatment happens, a follow-up appointment is scheduled.
Services and treatments include:
• CoolSculpting is a FDA-cleared fat-freezing procedure that eliminates stubborn fat in nine FDA treatment areas, including the abdomen, flanks and sides.
• Microdermabrasion is a non-chemical, non-invasive procedure that uses a handpiece to exfoliate and remove the outermost layer of dry, dead skin cells to reveal younger, healthier-looking skin.
• Dermabrasion is a more intensive procedure that removes several layers of skin for deeper facial lines, extreme sun damage and scarring.
• ProCell is a serum formulated to work in conjunction with micro needling and the rejuvenating facial options.
• Dermaplaning is a physical exfoliation procedure that uses a sterile, surgical scalpel to gently “shave” the skin’s surface, removing the top-most layer of dead skin along with fine, vellus hair.
• Ultherapy is the only non-invasive procedure FDA-cleared to lift skin on the neck, face, under the chin, and on the eyebrow.
• The CO2 Fractional Laser Resurfacing removes layers of skin tissue in a fractionated method to help reduce “age-spots,” fine lines, wrinkles, scarring, uneven coloration, skin laxity, textural irregularities, dull tone, and a thinned collagen layer of the face, neck, and chest.
• The Emvera Diolux Laser Hair Removal Machine is a state-of- the-art, gold standard laser for hair reduction, permanent hair reduction and treatment of benign vascular and pigmented lesions.
• BioTE Hormone Replacement Therapy (BHRT) uses bio-identical hormones derived from natural plant sources to replicate your body’s natural hormones to help regulate hormone levels and reduces symptoms associated with hormone imbalances.
• A fat transfer, sometimes called fat grafting, involves removing fat from one part of the body via gentle liposuction and then injecting it elsewhere.
• Injectables are various synthetic or natural materials that the doctor injects into the skin to remove lines, folds, wrinkles, jowls, and more. Options include Botox and Dysport, PRP Facial/Facelift, Sculptra, Xeomin, Juvederm, Radiesse, Versa, and Restylane products
Vitality accepts insurance as well as Medicare and Flexible Spending Accounts. Other financing options include CareCredit, United Medical Credit, In-House Financing and GreenSky