That doughnuts are not good for you shouldn’t be a surprise. However, doughnuts are worse than many other snacks in the market. A small bag of chips has about 260 calories, and a small bag of cookies can have anywhere from 50 to 200 calories each, depending on the type, size and brand. In comparison, a single doughnut can easily contain more than 300 calories. Add to that lots of sugar, fats and other unhealthy ingredients, and doughnuts can wreak havoc on your health.
Even a single doughnut a day can lead to significant weight gain over time. A Krispy Kreme raspberry-filled jam doughnut contains 300 calories, while a chocolate iced doughnut contains 350 calories. According to website Family Doctor, 3,500 calories equal 1 lb. If you add a doughnut a day to your regular diet and don’t exercise the calories off or cut down on calories elsewhere, you will gain about one extra pound every 10 days.
Doughnuts are a very bad choice for your heart. They’re fried, which means you’re consuming lots of saturated and trans fats. According to a 2008 report published by the Hong Kong Consumer Council, doughnuts have more trans fats than chocolate, peanut butter chocolate bars and even chips. A single doughnut will meet your maximum allowance for trans fats for the whole day, and the truth is that people rarely eat just one doughnut. Trans fats can increase your cholesterol and triglycerides, and increase your risk of heart disease.
High Blood Sugar
Doughnuts contain lots of sugar. Even the plain doughnuts are high in sugar, but if you choose one with glazing, cream or jam, the fat, sugar and calorie numbers soar. A chocolate glazed cake doughnut contains 5 tsp. of sugar. According to the American Heart Association, women should eat a maximum of 6 tsp. of sugar a day, so a single doughnut will almost meet that number. If you eat more than one on a regular basis, this could lead to problems with your blood sugar, such as erratic glucose levels in the blood, energy crashes and more. People with diabetes should avoid sugary foods such as doughnuts as much as possible.
Lack of Nutrients
Doughnuts are made of white flour, a simple carbohydrate. On top of that, they contain lots of sugar. This makes them a highly refined, highly processed product. Refined carbs contain close to no fiber, an essential nutrient present in whole grain and other natural, healthy foods. Fiber is essential to keep you regular, but it can also help prevent colon cancer, help lower cholesterol and control blood sugar levels.
- Nutrition Action Newsletter; "The Hole Truth: What You Don't Know About Doughnuts -- Brand-Name Rating"; Jayne Hurley et al; January/February 2004
- Family Doctor: What it Takes to Lose Weight
- Calorie Counting: Calories in Krispy Kreme Doughnuts
- American Heart Association: Sugars and Carbohydrates
- The Standard; "Bitter Truth of Daily Doughnut"; Timothy Chui; May 2008
- Sugar Stacks: Sugar in Snacks