UNC Health Talk

For the Love of Donuts

Ashley HoneycuttAshley Honeycutt, RD, LDN is the Manager of Corporate and Community Services for Rex Wellness Centers. She blogs about nutrition, wellness & healthy living.

Two men in costume participating in the Krispy Kreme Challenge
Run, eat 12 doughnuts, and run more: don’t get sick!

There’s only one good reason to eat a dozen donuts at one time – to raise money for the NC Children’s Hospital (and maybe to watch your forty-something husband and brother-in-law dress in ridiculous outfits).

The Krispy Kreme Challenge. Over 7,500 runners (most in some sort of costume) dashing 2.5 miles through Raleigh to down a dozen COLD stale glazed donuts, only to turn around and run another 2.5 miles – all in under one hour – hopefully without getting sick. After years of hearing about it, I finally had the opportunity to participate (as a supportive spectator, of course).

On the outside, I was cheering for the competitors and enjoying the hilarity. But, my ‘inner dietitian’ was doing the math.
A dozen glazed donuts = 2400 calories, 144 grams of fat, 120 grams of sugar.
More calories than the average woman should eat in almost two days. More than 3x the amount of fat and 5x the amount of sugar someone should consume daily. Yikes. And I’m sure most of those runners had lunch and/or dinner later in the day.

Yes, dietitians are always doing the math because we’re trained to do so. But, we are NOT the food police. Don’t be afraid to seek our advice. Most dietitians eat donuts and enjoy them. We give our clients permission to eat donuts. But, we also teach them to balance those donuts with plenty of fruits, vegetables and whole grains…and at least 2 1/2 hours of moderate aerobic physical activity each week.

My advice? Enjoy life, give back and enjoy a donut on occasion. Even a dietitian can appreciate this crazy event. I guess one day a year of excessive donut eating for charity is ok by me. Hey, at least they RAN to the donuts, right?