Dimples Romana is looking better than ever at 37, thanks to a renewed passion for health and wellness.

The proud wife and mom of two (and soon to be three, as she announced on Friday) wasn’t always the health buff or health-conscious celebrity. Admittedly, she said, it was during the pandemic that she took her health more earnestly through a combination of nutrition, exercise and lifestyle changes.

According to her, it all began when she had an executive medical check-up almost a year ago.

She recently told The STAR in an exclusive chat: “Alam kong nakakatakot iyong executive check-up because minsan what we don’t know won’t hurt us, sabi nila. Pero pagdating sa health kasi, I think baliktad yun. Dapat alam natin para hindi tayo masasaktan. It is important that you understand and you know what’s going on in your body even if the information is scary because early detection is better.”

“With me, may mga na-detect ako na oo nga pala, tumatanda na pala ako, 37 years old na pala ako, kelangan kong alagaan, dapat nga ginawa ko pa ito when I was younger. Again, ‘pag wala tayong nararamdaman, OK lang tayo ng OK, healthy ako, wala akong nararamdaman. But it doesn’t mean our internal body is also agreeing with how we think. Yun palang puyat, pagod, stress, when it all accumulates, bigla-bigla mo nalang siya nakikita.”

Dimples stressed her new health journey isn’t about wanting to maintain her looks as she approaches her 40s.

The actress-host and entrepreneur with husband Boyet Ahmee and children Callie and Alonzo.

She explained: “Hindi talaga ako known to be somebody who’s conscious about the way I look. Artista naman ako but I’m a character actor. I actually embraced each phase of my body. You will know that, ‘pag nag-re-replay yung mga shows namin, may mga shows ako na malaki ako, manipis ako, chunky ako… but I always felt beautiful in each phase of my body. Pinalaki din kami to really love what was given to us. The weight-loss journey specifically wasn’t for aesthetics. It was really for health.”

She’s also doing it for her kids — Callie, 18, who’s enrolled in an aviation school in Australia, Alonzo, 7, and incoming “Baby E”. “To be honest, natatakot ako because ‘pag tinitingnan ko mga anak ko, I want to be able to say, makikita ko sila mag-ga-graduate, makikita ko ang magiging apo ko and that was the main goal for me. Secondary nalang yung, ‘You look great because you lost a little bit of weight.’”

She believes that if one makes her motivations as “deeper” as wanting to live longer and live life to the max, the health transformation is easier to achieve.

Another motivation is her husband Boyet Ahmee’s health scare. Just before the pandemic, her husband landed in the hospital after suffering from sleep apnea, a disorder that causes a person to stop breathing in their sleep.

Dimples happily shared that her husband is OK now, but “these are the things that really scared me. For the lack of a better word, it really scared me to death because I thought I was going to lose the love of my life.”

Dimples Romana is more than happy to share her passion for health and wellness as celebrity ambassador of Santé Barley Max, an all-natural superfood supplement.

“At that time, sleep apnea was something accumulated over the years, hindi mo nararamdaman. Naghihilik siya, (we’d think) ay normal yan. Di ba we always make a joke about it but what we don’t know is na-ste-strain yung heart ng isang tao basta grabe yung hilik niya and nahihirapan siya sa breathing niya. When I found out about it, we did all the necessary things to make sure hindi mahirapan puso niya,” she added.

She also recalled losing her younger sister to leukemia and her father to aneurysm at the young age of 41. “When you have these experiences early on, you realize how life is truly short. It gives you a different perspective on health and wellness,” she reflected.

“It really gives a sense of direction that whatever happens, you should value your health, your life, and things that are truly important.

“I know it’s important to earn but it’s not the end-all and be-all of life. Paano tayo kikita kung hindi naman tayo malusog or malakas? And now more than ever, the pandemic really reminded us of that.”

As Dimples personifies holistic wellness goals, no wonder she’s been handpicked by health brands to be their celebrity ambassador. One of them is Santé Barley Max, the all-natural superfood supplement using barley grass powder certified by BioGro, New Zealand’s best-known certifier for organic produce.

Dimples said, “I am so grateful for being able to work and have endorsement deals because these are really very uncertain times. I believe that everything could be balanced with the right blend of time management. Work is essential but my family is the most important in my life.

“We need to stay healthy and active not only physically but mentally and emotionally as well. This is the reason why I am so ecstatic now that I am officially a part of the Santé Barley Max family because the brand is really effective in strengthening the immune system and providing the vitamins and nutrients that our bodies need every day. One sachet per day or a single capsule before a meal really makes a world of difference.”

Santé International, on the other hand, explained why Dimples is the “perfect artist to represent Santé Barley Max.”

Citing that her values and personality align well with theirs, Santé International CEO Joey Marcelo said in a statement, “Looking at her, you know that she is someone who lives to serve. She’s also very nurturing not only to her family but also to her colleagues, friends, and followers. We also see her as a catalyst who could influence people to change for the better.”

To be healthy is a must as Dimples wants to continue being proactive and keep up with her schedule.

“Sobrang busy po ako sa panahon na ito, kasi may production team kami. Siempre ‘pag mayroong mga tao na umaasa sayo, nagmamahal sayo at sinusuportahan ka, ayaw mo sila biguin, di ba? Ako talaga more than ever, even when you’re afraid, you do things that make you less afraid,” she admitted.

The company named ABCD Productions was put up mainly to help displaced ABS-CBN workers. She said, “Ever since our network shut down, of course, we had to make sure we also do our responsibility as celebrities to help out who we can. I know a lot of my co-celebrities have already helped so many people in the production field, but of course, hanap pa rin tayo ng trabaho kasi hindi naman tumitigil ang bayaran natin.”

The actress-host and entrepreneur is also a Department of Tourism ambassador and Securities Exchange Commission investment champion. She is also building an acting and personality development school, and is coaching privately. Just recently, she enrolled at the New York University (NYU) Continuing Education Courses — and now, she’s going to be a mom again!

When The STAR asked how she’s juggling all these roles while dealing with her COVID fears, she said in the interview conducted before the pregnancy reveal, “You know, every day, I am scared. I live my life as a scaredy-cat. I always fear it (COVID).”

“Recently, I had an interview with a colleague and I was asked, do you ever do things when afraid? And I said yes, every single day. Minsan maganda rin yung takot tayo because at least nagiging careful tayo.

“When you’re afraid, you become more proactive in life, dahil may mga kinatatakutan ka, ‘Paano kung di ko mabigay ito sa pamilya ko? Paano kung di ko mabigay ang magandang buhay sa kanila?’ So, I like living in fear but at the same time, I like to counter it. I like doing things that lessen my fear,” she said, referring to all the things she does, health-wise.

Dimples is so busy that we asked what made her change her initial plan to “semi-retire” from showbiz after her hit TV series Kadenang Ginto.

She looked back: “Iba pala ang plan ni Lord. I think it’s important that we all have our plans as people, but ultimately, our blueprint is written by the Almighty, you cannot override that. I’m a follower, I’m a soldier, so when the Lord tells me, Dimps, you cannot rest yet, you have to work pa, but of course I follow naman, I never want to question the Lord’s plans for me.

“In fact, there are so many exciting things going on in our lives and I can only be grateful. Hindi ako pwede mag-reklamo. Napakaswerte natin sa mga panahon ngayon basta may matatawag ka na trabaho, may pamilya ka at walang sakit, blessing na yun. I don’t want to take it for granted.

“I want the Lord to know that we’re doing our jobs as well, with our life on Earth, and really say, if we can affect more lives and help them more, bakit hindi. Sometimes, we forget that when you’re blessed with so much, you can’t keep it to yourself, it has to be shared as well. Often the Lord will bless you because He will know you will want to share it. I really want to do my part and when we get blessings, we try as much as possible to take in more people for the work.”

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