'Pioneer Woman' Ree Drummond Gives Health Tips After Losing 43 Pounds Without a Trainer or Specialty Diet

Ree Drummond
Tyler Essary/NBC/NBCU Photo Bank via Getty Images

The 52-year-old TV chef got serious about her weight around the start of the year.

Ree Drummond might whip up delicious treats in the kitchen on her show, Pioneer Woman, but in 2021, the 52-year-old TV chef decided to get serious about her health. 

In a new blog post on her website, Drummond offers readers tips on how she managed to shed 43 pounds since January. 

"In January, just before I bit the bullet and took the leap, I was tired, puffy, and desperate (I will write about my rock bottom sometime; it's quite a story) — and I knew I shouldn't be feeling that way," the mother of four shared. 

For the chef, losing weight wasn't about a number on a scale. It was about getting to a healthier place. 

"As of today, I've lost 43 pounds. I hesitate to even say that number, because for me, the way I feel today, it isn't about the weight loss," she explained. "It's more about how I feel after a few months of regular exercise, more moving, and more mindful eating. Feeling good is really all that matters."

Drummond made it clear that she did not try any specialty diets like Keto or intermittent fasting or join a weight loss program. And the only "trainer" she used was her husband, Ladd. 

Some of the tricks that worked for Drummond included monitoring her calorie intake, weighing her food, exercising and specifically building muscle, eating more protein, eating less sugar, abstaining from alcohol, tracking her progress in an app and using a standing desk.

"My favorite high-protein foods that got me through: Low fat plain Greek yogurt (add a little sugar free vanilla syrup for a sweet snack, or use it as the basis for veggie dips), low fat cottage cheese, lean beef, chicken, turkey, salmon, cod, egg whites (I'm obsessed), raw almonds, 1% milk, Swiss cheese, homemade protein balls (recipe coming soon)...I love it all!" she shared. "Then to fill in the blanks, lots of spinach (raw or cooked), an apple a day, kale, carrots...the good stuff!"

Drummond kept it real, noting, "All of that said, were there days I gave in and had a piece of cake? Yes! I'm The Pioneer Woman and I love food! Ha. But the piece of cake was the size of Rhode Island instead of Texas, and it wasn't an everyday thing."

As for exercise, she walked the dogs, used a rowing machine, and did Pilates, all at home. When Drummond hit a six-week plateau, she sought help from her husband, who had recently been in a car accident and broken his neck. 

"Ladd, while stuck in his neck brace, by the way, showed me how to do lunges, squats, straight-leg deadlifts, and calf raises," she shared, noting that she works out six days a week. 

As for alcohol, though Drummond abstained for four months, she now drinks lower calorie cocktails like "Ranch Water." 

"A little clear Casamigos tequila, fresh squeezed lime (I do like half a lime!), and cold Topo Chico sparkling mineral water, which is super carbonated," she revealed. "All over ice! Tequila has the least amount of calories of any booze, and the mineral water allows me to tell myself I'm hydrating. Ha."