Meet Amy Upchurch, founder and CEO of Pink Stork. Amy talks tips and tricks and simple life hacks to make pregnancy easier and more enjoyable for future mamas.
Pink Stork is born out of your own personal experience; tell us about it: In 2009, my husband Thomas and I were thrilled to learn we were going to become parents. However, what should have been an exciting time for us turned into one of the biggest challenges of our lives. Just weeks into my pregnancy, I began to experience debilitating morning sickness; vomiting 20 to 30 times a day, unable to eat, drink or function, and suffering severe weight loss and dehydration. Doctors officially diagnosed me with Hyperemesis Gravidarum; extreme morning sickness. Determined to not let hyperemesis scare me from having the family of my dreams, I endured two more excruciating and challenging pregnancies as a single mom with my husband deployed overseas, in which doctors again diagnosed me with hyperemesis gravidarum; offering band-aid treatments that never got to the root of my problem. Determined to make my fourth pregnancy different, I embarked on a journey to take matters into my own hands. With my fourth pregnancy, I implemented a research-based, new protocol that included taking vitamins and supplements from around the world, which worked at eliminating my nausea and vomiting, while giving my body the nourishment needed to support me and my growing baby. Having discovered the power of natural and organic healing, I wanted to empower other women to enjoy their pregnancies. This strong desire to give every woman the pregnancy they deserved resulted in me launching Pink Stork, a retail company that sells organic and non-GMO products for women throughout their entire pregnancy journey, in 2015.
Do you feel women suffering from hyperemesis gravidarum are not well supported by their health practitioners? Why is there so little misinformation or misunderstanding of the root cause of this illness? Healthcare practitioners do an amazing job at saving women’s lives when they have been diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum, but since the symptoms are so severe the practitioners tend to be more focused on what they can do to stabilize the matter versus preventatively finding cures and causes. Only one percent of pregnant women are diagnosed with hyperemesis gravidarum, which is why I think there are such little information and a lot of misunderstanding about the real root cause of this illness. The lack of public knowledge is one of the many reasons I think it is so important that Pink Stork continues to educate women, both via our content and our products, on ways to ensure they have an enjoyable pregnancy at every stage of their journey.
Your range of products support women not only while they’re trying to conceive, but during labor and recovery – what are the particular vitamins and nutrients that support women best during each of these seasons? With more than 25 products to date, whether you suffer from mild to severe nausea, bouts of indigestion, heartburn, vitamin deficiency, supplement intolerance or more, I’m sincerely confident that Pink Stork will help women dramatically reduce their symptoms and help them fully experience the joys pregnancy is meant to offer.
A product I love of ours that is tailored to women trying to conceive is our Pink Stork Fertility Tea, which is the perfect addition to help improve fertility, regulate cycles, and balance hormones. Our tea is made of a healthy and fertility-boosting blend of seven scientifically selected organic and non-GMO herbs, such as Red Raspberry, Chaste-berry, and Nettle, to soothe and reduce stress.
Another example that shows the range of our products is our newly launched Morning Sickness Candies, which are USDA organic, non-GMO and preservative-free. These healthy treats are balanced with organic ginger and natural raspberry flavor. Ginger’s anti-inflammatory properties have been used for millennia to relieve nausea and ease other pregnancy ailments. Paired with the 15 mg of B6 per candy, which restores potassium and sodium levels in the body, the candies are sure to become a favorite product in any home to ease any nausea related symptoms.
What was the personal difference you noticed during your fourth pregnancy, after making the diet and lifestyle changes? You’re currently pregnant with baby number five, correct? I just had my fifth baby Gloria and am so proud to say that my last two pregnancies have been so enjoyable. With the help of our entire breadth of Pink Stork products, and the help of my family of course, I’ve been able to truly enjoy every moment of my previous two pregnancies.
How can we be more supportive to women during pregnancy, labor and delivery – not only in the health community, but as a larger society? What key elements do you feel are missing in our approach to childbearing? In society, there’s a lot of fear surrounding pregnancy, whether it be fear of childbirth, age limits, delivering a healthy baby, fertility, or even being a working mom. I think it’s critically important to encourage women to trust their bodies and arm them with tools and information that can help them do so. It is so important for us as a community of women to encourage each other to step outside our boundaries of fear. Every woman’s pregnancy looks different and I think by educating one another about our own personal experiences we can build a community of women that are knowledgeable and happy pre, during, and post-pregnancy.
Tell us about your product line – what research went into its development? Each product is highly unique and supportive for both mother and baby – such as your “True Milk” tea for after delivery. It encourages not only increased milk production and flow, but offers support for a colicky and gassy baby; can you tell us more? Our product line is naturally evolving as we constantly look for new innovations to relieve pregnancy-specific symptoms that often arise while building a family. Our first product launched was morning sickness tea, and we now have more than 10 products that combat morning sickness alone. We grew with our customer base, listened to what they needed, and developed products in a variety of forms that aid in every stage of a woman’s pregnancy. A lot of times, women are buying our products before they even tell their families they’re pregnant and we so appreciate their trust and belief in our products. We’re with our customers every step of the way and they feel that.
What do you hope for the future of Pink Stork? Any new products you’re especially excited about? We just launched Calm, a prenatal relaxation tea, this week that we’re really excited about. Our Calm Tea is made from 4 scientifically selected USDA organic, non-GMO scientifically selected herbs, which encourage your body to naturally wind down when anxiety and emotions are running high. We’re also about to launch some really exciting new products that we think our customers will absolutely love.
We created Pink Stork three years ago to give women the pregnancies they deserve by arming them with natural, supplement-rich, organic products specifically built with expecting moms in mind. We hope to continue inspiring, educating, and bettering all future and expecting moms throughout their pregnancy journeys.
Q&A WITH AMY UPCHURCH:
BOOK OR MAGAZINE? BOOK.
PLANE RIDE OR ROAD TRIP? PLANE RIDE.
COFFEE OR WINE? BOTH.
BOOK CLUB OR DANCE CLUB? DANCE CLUB.
STAY UP LATE OR WAKE UP EARLY? WAKE UP EARLY.
DATE NIGHT IN OR OUT? DATE NIGHT OUT.