We chat with Ankur Goyal, Founder & CEO of andME to find out more about how the right nutrition can positively impact on health issues relating specifically to women.
andME started as a brand which focused on women and women’s health. In 2017, when we started out, nobody was really focusing on women’s health, especially in India.
We provide products which are targeted at particular areas of women’s well-being, including period care, PCOS, menopause, etc.
We strive to provide products that are super clean and simple, in the form of food or a beverage, that will be easily accepted by women, particularly in India.
Yes, our protein product is particularly aimed at women’s general well-being. Women and men require different levels of protein and this particular product caters for female needs, while providing all the necessary vitamins and minerals. We have also added a few herbs which help with hormonal imbalances and can relieve stress. This is definitely a product that I would recommend for daily use.
Often the nutritional values that are needed by men are very different to that of women. For example, women require much higher levels of calcium and iron to men. Therefore, andME products may not have the necessary nutritional requirements for men.
There are also a few herbs that are not suited to men. For example, our UTI product contains a herb called Varuna. This is a diuretic ayurvedic herb that does wonders for women, but can potentially cause impotence in men.
We test all our products. Our biggest study, however, involved our PCOS product. We asked over 200 women who suffer from PCOS to take the product and to report their symptoms for two months every day. It was not a clinical trial as the company is not yet big enough.
From this study we were able to ascertain that 83% of these women returned to a normal cycle. Most women spoke of higher energy levels and weight loss. We also had reports of acne improving and the only side effect that was reported was bloating.
Our products are not organic but everything is vegan and gluten-free. There are only a few guidelines in India concerning organic certification, which is why calling a product “organic” can be tricky.
There are three classes of ingredients:
Vitamins and minerals (micronutrients)
Ayurvedic herbs of which we use the extracts
Laboratory developed ingredients, scientifically proven to help a certain issue (e.g., we formulate a cranberry compound for our UTI product instead of using pure cranberries).
The other important aspect is to make sure the products taste good and are easy to take so our customers do not feel like they are taking medication.
We do not test on animals. Our products are 100% natural and there is much data supporting the safety of these ingredients.
We offer products which range from menstruation to menopause, therefore women within those age categories are our target audience. We do tend to reach more women who are computer savvy so these tend to be women aged between 18 and 35. Reaching older women has been a challenge for us.
India has one of the cheapest internet services in the world. Almost 45% of our demand emanates from very small remote and rural villages.
Yes I believe so. In India, and in other parts of the world, these subjects are often taboo. India can also be a very close community, so if a girl goes to the chemist in rural India, and asks for something to help her with PCOS, the whole village will be made aware of her situation. Potentially not being able to conceive a child carries a huge stigma and she could very well be ostracized by the community.
We ship to the US through Amazon and to South Africa but through a distributor. I think the US is similar to India, in the sense that our customers are those that feel there are taboos or social stigmas around their predicament. Many of them are from Central America.
Subscriptions are not big in India, so sales here are usually a one off or quarterly. In the States, most of our customers buy a monthly subscription.
We offer a pretty unique service. For products which target a particular issue, PCOS, menopause etc…,we have little or no competition.