NICK CARTER IS LOVING LIFE - SHIRTLESS!
Backstreet Boy Nick Carter is in the best shape of his life after a 10 year drug and alcohol problem. Mild chest pain led Carter to a diagnosis of cardiomyopathy...a weakening of the heart muscle that, in extreme cases, can require a transplant or lead to sudden death. “I’m trying to make myself better," Carter tells PEOPLE, "But I don’t regret anything that I’ve gone through, because it makes me who I am.”
After a couple of mild slip-ups and a blunt conversation with his cardiologist, Carter is now sober and healthy, down from 224 lbs. to 167, and lookin' hot. Most importantly, he's feeling good. Today, says Carter, life is "awesome."
MUST SEE VIDEO: The Backstreet Boy tells how his party-boy past led to near-disaster – and why he wouldn't change a thing.
For more on Carter's recovery – including how his tumultuous family life affected his struggles, why he moved from L.A. to Nashville, and the secret behind his dramatic 57 lb. weight loss – pick up this week's issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands Friday.