Kelly Clarkson Explains How She 'Dropped Weight'

Kelly Clarkson Explains How She 'Dropped Weight'

Why did people think Kelly Clarkson was Sabrina Carpenter? Clarkson has been shaking up her life in a big way, and people are noticing for — mostly — the right reasons.

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Kelly Clarkson is building a new life — and a new look — in the big city.

As a single mom to daughter River Rose, 9, and son Remington Alexander, 7, Clarkson, 41, now calls New York City home. “I was very unhappy in L.A. and had been for several years. I needed a fresh start,” she tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story.

Relocating her hit talk show from L.A. to N.Y.C., "we told NBC, ‘I’m not trying to sound ungrateful, I just can’t stay here anymore for my mental health; for me and my kids.’ They weren’t doing well either. For the past few years, I’d just been showing up and smiling and doing what I’m supposed to do, but you can only compartmentalize so long until you break."

Kelly Clarkson
Kelly Clarkson for PEOPLE. WEISS EUBANKS
Typical non-working days now revolve around exploring the city with her kids (whom she shares with ex-husband Brandon Blackstock, 47). “We go walk the dogs a few times at the park. We'll go for ice cream because my daughter will wear me down. We'll go make slime and we go to the museum,” she says.

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Kelly Clarkson cover 1/15/2024 issue
Kelly Clarkson on the cover of PEOPLE.
Clarkson credits their on-the-go activities for helping her get in shape. “Walking in the city is quite the workout,” she says. “And I’m really into infrared saunas right now. And I just got a cold plunge because everybody wore me down.”

As for her diet, “I eat a healthy mix. I dropped weight because I’ve been listening to my doctor — a couple years I didn’t. And 90 percent of the time I’m really good at it because a protein diet is good for me anyway. I’m a Texas girl, so I like meat — sorry, vegetarians in the world!”
Kelly Clarkson is seen performing during NBC's "Today" show Citi Concert Series at Rockefeller Plaza on September 22, 2023 in New York City
Kelly Clarkson performs for the Today show on Sept. 22, 2023, in New York City. GILBERT CARRASQUILLO/GC IMAGES
The move to N.Y.C. allowed Clarkson the chance to “be present” for her show, which was just nominated for a Critics Choice Award for best talk show (the only daytime show and female host in the category).
“I was going through a really rough few years, and even in the first season it was rough behind closed doors,” she says. “Just to be able to come into season 5 feeling good and knowing my kids feel good— and the dust has settled. Season 5 is my first season to actually enjoy every minute of it.”