“A woman is the full circle. Within her is the power to create, nurture and transform.” 

-Diane Mariechild 

Women, through generations, have time and again embodied the vessel of creation to lay the foundation for a new stream of thought, approach, and practice. Here’s to celebrating the inspirational tale of one such woman, Co-Founder of Archi Foods Kalpana Navin, a 60-year old homemaker, who identified a need for products that would help women cope with a range of physiological processes their bodies undergo through different stages of life. She transformed this need into a line of organic, path-breaking products that amalgamates health, hygiene, and traditional remedies. 

What’s really special about Kalpana’s entrepreneurial journey is the story of its inception, which comes from a very personal space of caring for those whom we love the most. In 2018, she experienced a significant life event, the birth of her grandchild. After stepping into this new role of a grandmother, she started observing various changes and challenges that her daughter-in-law’s body was experiencing in this transition period- be it sleepless nights, painful backaches, joint pains, general discomfort, and weakness. She also observed that her daughter-in-law was not lactating optimally. She decided to take this situation into her hands to make the experience of motherhood as joyful and pleasant as possible for her daughter-in-law and her little one. She dived into action and turned her kitchen slab into a magician’s box. She began putting together a range of homemade concoctions by combining her wisdom, resources, experience, and a dash of love to provide for her daughter-in-law’s nutritional requirements and aid her holistic healing. As her daughter-in-law responded well to these recipes and her body showed a speedy recovery, Kalpana gained an impetus to take these recipes outside the confines of her household. With inspiration from Start-Up India, she started transforming these magical recipes into a unique line of organic products with the intent to share them with thousands of women all over the world who are experiencing a range of bodily transitions and challenges in their postpartum stage.

In May this year, Kalpana is going to launch her first two products, which are an embodiment of her brand’s philosophy and everything it strives for. The first product is a holistic, nutritional supplement for menstruating girls (age 13 and above) that aims to help them cope with their menstrual cycles in a happier and healthier way by providing essential nutrients that help with the pain of menstrual cramps, restoring hormonal balance, improving blood circulation and menstrual flow, and enhancing mood. The second product is a supplement for nursing mothers, a rich blend of 32 herbs and spices hand-picked from the pages of age-old diaries hidden in the confines of a grandma’s kitchen. This product aims to help with the sustenance of optimum lactation and makes it easier for new mothers to cope with other challenges that come with this miracle of life. It would help with backaches, joint pains, effectively enhance metabolism, strengthen bones, and boost their overall immunity to provide them with the strength and energy to relish the joys of motherhood. 

Coming from humble beginnings in a grandmother’s kitchen, an exceptional trait about Kalpana’s products is that she has put them together with utmost care using only 100% natural ingredients. She believes that our ancient traditions and recipes hold within them a plethora of magical secrets that can contribute to the health and well-being of women from across all age groups. They’re resolute in their attempt to build a bridge between traditional, ancestral knowledge and the modern era to meet the demands placed upon the health of women in these fast-changing times.

In India, a lack of information about the various natural processes that a woman’s body undergoes, such as menstrual cycles, has led to misconceptions, stigmatization, and discrimination, causing a lot of stress and anxiety in women. Being a strong advocate of women empowerment, Kalpana strives towards eradicating several myths, wrong behavioral patterns, and practices that surround normal phases of transition in female anatomies such as menstrual cycles and lactation by spreading knowledge and awareness which will facilitate holistic care, thus enabling the creation of a better, healthier environment for future generations.

Dr. Sanjay Lunia

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