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Slimmer and sexier Ruben Studdard excited about his 'fit and healthy' future

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After losing more than 100 pounds, former "American Idol" and "Biggest Loser" contestant Ruben Studdard is ready to heed the advice from his new producer, David Foster, reported the Huffington Post on Dec. 13. "From now on, everything you do has to be sexy!" Foster told the man known as the Velvet Teddy Bear.

For years, Ruben admits, his weight struggles held him back from revealing his true sexy self.

Now "I work out every day, and my goal is to be fit and healthy," he asserts. He's following through with the lessons provided by his trainer on "The Biggest Loser," Dolvett Quince.

Can we expect to see a Velvet Teddy Bear minus all the stuffing? Well, maybe not.

"I don't know if I was meant to be actually thin!" laughs Ruben. But he definitely wants to lose more weight.

“I’m down 112 pounds altogether,” Ruben told Access Hollywood Live on Dec. 13. “I still have a very long way to go to meet my goal, but I am really, really happy and feel great.”

Does he have a role model in mind? Yes, when he achieves his "physical best" through diet and exercise, Ruben knows who he wants to emulate.

“I wanna be like Michael Strahan’s size. Just ripped up!” he said, referring to the co-host of "Kelly and Michael Live."

As far as how Ruben feels about himself now, his views about music sum it up.

"I'm sure writers and painters feel the same way about their own art -- it inspires music! But, as I'm a singer, I feel my art is the most expansive and influential. Not me, Ruben Studdard, but the art of song, of music, in general. It is so life-affirming," said the new and improved Ruben.

And the title of his new album says it all: "Ruben Studdard: Unconditional Love" (click for details).

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