Emma Heming Willis Launches Brain Health Brand, 'New Purpose' amid Bruce Willis' Dementia Battle (Exclusive)
“It's like a fire's been lit. It's my new purpose and here I am,” Emma Heming Willis tells PEOPLE while announcing the launch of Make Time Wellness, her new supplement brand that supports brain health
Emma Heming Willis is making strides in her advocacy work, admitting that a "fire's been lit" with her new purpose in life.
The 44-year-old has been dedicated to raising awareness around brain health since her husband Bruce Willis was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia. Now, the model and entrepreneur is opening up to PEOPLE about the launch of her new brand, Make Time Wellness, which prioritizes brain health in women's wellness routines.
Heming Willis explains that she had never heard the term brain health until she visited a doctor a few years ago after experiencing short-term memory and fogginess, hoping to get to the bottom of her "mommy brain."
"We always talk about breast health or heart health, but brain health was just something that I had never heard of," she tells PEOPLE.
After being introduced to the concept, she changed her approach to her health entirely, taking a slew of supplements that could support her mind.
"My brain was suffering, and I could feel it," she adds. "Why is the focus on the rest of our body when really our brain is our biggest asset and the one that we should be really looking after? I found that when you put your brain first and when you are taking care of your brain, your whole body benefits."
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However, feeling uneasy with the numerous supplements she was taking, Heming Willis turned to Helen Christoni to create their own "brain health drink," combining all the beneficial vitamins into one product.
The pair co-founded Make Time Wellness, launching today with the release of the brand's first four products: wellness drink powders — Make Time for Brain Health ($49) and Make Time for Prenatal Health ($49) — and gummy vitamins — Make Time Women's Multi-Vitamin ($24) and Make Time Prenatal Vitamin ($24).
"Make Time Wellness is more than a brand. It's a movement to really lead a global conversation about brain health and putting brain health at the top of their nutritional regimen," Christoni tells PEOPLE. "We created a group of products for busy women, and we've spent years developing delicious drinks that women can take easily every day. Our brain health formula supports brain, body, and beauty in that order. It's really a drink that women can take daily that covers all their bases."
"We're committed to encouraging all women to go on this 'make time' journey with us, to check in, to put themselves first, and to carve these times out of the day to really make time to do something for you and your brain health — whether it's lifestyle, diet, exercise, picking your vitamins, whatever it is, just to join us on this make time journey."
Related: Emma Heming Willis Advocating for Husband Bruce Willis After Dementia Diagnosis: 'I Didn't Come to Play'
Heming Willis admits that creating this brain health brand is close to her heart amid her own journey as a caregiver for her husband Bruce Willis. She revealed back in February that the Die Hard star was diagnosed with frontotemporal dementia, sharing that his condition has worsened in the past year.
She tells PEOPLE that although she wishes her situation was different, she's using her family's journey to speak out more and commit to raising awareness around brain health, dementia and caregivers.
"For me, it's really about connecting to a community and being open and able to talk about dementia and to take away that stigma that there is no shame around it." Heming Willis says. "I'm learning through the process."
"I'm able to call an expert and speak to some of the most incredible doctors. So I guess I have a new purpose, and I'm so excited that I'm able to share what I'm learning with everyone," she continues. "It's like a fire's been lit. It's my new purpose and here I am. I hate that it's me. I wish it wasn't, but you know what? I'm not going to be quiet. I am going to use my voice and through action, awareness and conversation, that creates change."
RELATED VIDEO: Bruce Willis Diagnosed with Frontotemporal Dementia, His Wife Emma Reveals: 'Condition Has Progressed'
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Along with the launch of Make Time Wellness, Heming Willis notes the brand's social impact program, vowing to donate 5% of every purchase to Hilarity for Charity, a nonprofit dedicated to caring for families impacted by Alzheimer's Disease and supporting brain health research and education.
Heming Willis says conversations about brain health are "long overdue" because of the stigma associated with diseases that attack the brain.
"I think it's important for young people to hear this because to have a brain healthy lifestyle can reduce your risk of developing Alzheimer's or related dementias tomorrow," she says. "Science is not able to reverse cognitive decline, unfortunately. But again, through action, awareness, and conversation, we want to create change. We want to see that. I want to see that. Lord, that would be great."
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