Studdard weighed upwards of 450 pounds when we were first introduced to his velvet voice on “American Idol” in 2003.
By the “American Idol” three finale, the “Velvet Teddy Bear” had won over America’s hearts. “I never had an issue or a problem with the way I looked,” the former high school football player told Wendy Williams recently.
Soon after winning “American Idol” Studdard checked into the Duke Diet and Fitness Center where he lost 70 pounds. “I really wanted to get in shape because I have a family history of diabetes and high blood pressure and things of that nature,” he told the Associated Press.
Studdard credits the Duke Diet and Fitness Center with teaching him to change his eating habits. “Two weeks after leaving there I turned to a vegetarian diet,” he said.
A former football player, Studdard says he’s not completely unfamiliar with the inside of a gym. He works out three times a week with a trainer and two without.
Studdard credits his vegan diet with changing his life. “Nothing with a parent” is how he describes his dairy and meat-free diet.
Ruben and Zuri are both vegetarians. “The thing is when you’re not a vegetarian, you don’t look for the places that serve vegetarian food,” he says. “What I found is that there are places all around the country that serve healthy food, you just have to look for them.”
Studdard says he and wife Zuri lead a healthy lifestyle at home to set a good example for their daughter.