He’s back…and unfortunately bigger than ever.
For those who know Ruben Studdard, he is the “Velvet Teddy Bear” and winner of season two of American Idol. But now he’s ready to put his battle with obesity behind him as he becomes a contestant on the season 15 of NBC’s The Biggest Loser in the fall.
After an attempt at a strict diet and workout regimen with renowned trainer Gunnar Peterson back in 2006, Studdard told People, “I was losing weight, but I was exhausted. It was making me sick.”
The “Sorry for 2004” singer then decided to throw away the 1,200 calorie-a-day plan and instead trade it in for exercise and vegetarianism which helped him lose 70 pounds.
His 2012 divorce from Surata Zuri McCants resulted in him gaining the weight back, but now wants to take charge once and for all.
“‘I’ve never had an issue with my weight,’ Studdard has said. ‘[But] my family has a history of high blood pressure, diabetes, heart-related issues – things I didn’t have to deal with yet because I’m young. But I don’t want to be worried at 40, and if I don’t fix things now, I will be.'”
So will Jillian Michaels help whip Ruben into shape? We have no doubt; but he will always be our Velvet Teddy Bear.