The DOs and DO-NUTs of DONUTS

After more questions than I can count about HOW I eat donuts AND stay in shape, I decided to write up my Donut Laws to teach you how YOU can do a donut yourself!

🍩 Donut Law #1: RELAX!!! DO trust me on this…eating a donut does NOT give you an instantaneous donut ring around your waist, nor does it make you a BAD or UNHEALTHY person. Keep in mind: The goal is to find a balanced and sustainable nutrition plan that you can do FOR LIFE!! It is NOT to constantly feel like you are “crash dieting” so hard you are perpetually deprived and unhappy. DEPRIVATION leads to BINGING…BINGING leads to YO-YO DIETING. Time to break the cycle. So take a chill pill, get that donut ready, and enjoy #SundayFunday!

🍩 Donut Law #2: DO NUT forget your PROTEIN FIRST! 👆🏻Chug a protein shake BEFORE you reach for a Maple Long John to ensure you don’t go overboard. Not only will the water in the shake fill you up quickly, but protein is the most immediately satiating macronutrient…which means it will make you full FASTER than any of the others (carbs and/or fats). By filling your belly with protein and water, you’re less likely to reach for more than one!

🍩 Donut Law #3: DO eat slowly!!! The faster we chomp that little ring of heaven, the more likely we are to want another, whether we are really hungry or not! Try to chew 20-30 times per bite.

🍩 Donut Law #4: DO NUT make this a daily occurrence! Choose one day a week for starters to enjoy a donut (in moderation and following the rules above). Over time, and after you feel comfortable that donuts are NOT a slippery slope, you can indulge more often than once a week.

🍩 Donut Law #5: DO NUT forget the 80/20 trick! 80% of your cals should come from clean foods each day. 20% can come from not-as-clean sources (like a donut). This allows you to create a balanced and healthy lifestyle that you can sustain FOREVER…withOUT feeling deprived!

On that note, as the wise Yoda one said, “DO or DO-NUT. There is no try.” Or something like that…whatever. Just go grab a donut and give it a try!



Related reading:

Macro Tracking For the Win! All of Your Questions Answered
Eating with Macros: A Day in the Life
Gluten-Free Maple Bacon Protein Donuts
Eat More, Lose More: Settling The Fresh vs. Fast Food Debate
Heidi-Approved (& Macro-Friendly) Fast Food Picks
National Rice Krispie Treat Day || Eat Up


  1. Enil Alvarado - April 13, 2018

    It’s hard sometimes to add some trigger foods to the menu, once a week. Like you said, you always want more. I have lost 29 pounds following your extreme transformation book and feel wonderful. It is amazing how just by changing a few things here and there, weight loss is possible. I have done it without much exercise, but now I feel like I can do more than I used to. I love your posts and learn from every single one.
    Forever grateful to you and Chris!

  2. Emilia - February 10, 2018

    This is soo funny. Thanks for sharing and making me laugh. I do appreciate all your tips and humor.

  3. Kay - January 11, 2018

    How to roughly estimate a doughnut macros????

    • Team Powell - January 12, 2018

      Hi Kay: You can get the cals and macros for a donut on MyFitnessPal,, and other websites 🙂

  4. Melissa Williams - October 17, 2017

    Thank You! I didn’t think about having a protein shake before the donut. I always have a glass of milk, but that doesn’t always fill me up. Thank you for being an inspiration to this mom of four!

  5. Jaime Kirkland - October 15, 2017

    I LOVE this! This is my biggest struggle. Feeling like I can’t ever have a treat when I’m trying to be healthy. This makes me feel better!

  6. Diane - October 15, 2017

    Thanks Heidi I Can go to the Donut shop now & buy one and not feel so guilty….

  7. Lucinda Elliott - October 14, 2017

    Thanks so much for sharing! I love having a donut every now and then. learning to not feel guilty afterwards is difficult! Appreciate your perspective!!

  8. Sonya Guerra - October 13, 2017

    LOVE THIS 🍩 Post!! Love that you tell us how we can treat ourselves while staying on track! Can’t wait to grab one!!

  9. Karen George - October 13, 2017

    Thanks for the tips – I could eat the whole box! I used to feel so bad if I ate a donut like I would gain 5 lbs by the end of the day! Thanks for explaining it – and I will only get one. Another trick I have is to buy the mini donuts (not the bag)! but the 6 pack and i let myself have one a day (powdered) dipped in coffee, and I am not on day 10 of a 6 pack and have 4 left! so I gave into my craving but did not even have one a day! Thanks Heidi!

  10. Jamie White - October 13, 2017

    “The goal is to find a balanced and sustainable nutrition plan that you can do FOR LIFE!!”

    I love this! So much truth when you say it can turn into bing eating when on an extream diet. I love being able to enjoy a snack WITH my 4 kids and be able to teach them balance.

    -Jamie White

  11. Deborah Brunner - October 12, 2017

    This post with you eating donuts is one of my favorites. When I saw you with donuts in your mouth I said HELL no!! There is no way that Heidi eats donuts!! Soooo Heidi does eat donuts and I say…….you Rock! You are beautiful, strong and most importantly you are REAL!

  12. Maria - October 12, 2017

    I must say, that I really loved this post. I loved the humor that you put on it, and how detailed you were about control and enjoying the moment. I love the idea of the protein before the donut, that’s a great suggestion.

  13. Sheryl Jarrett - October 12, 2017

    Great balance! Donuts are a trigger food for me so I just tend to stay away from them! But it’s all about not depriving yourselves of what u like too. Thanks Heidi!

  14. Lyndi - October 12, 2017

    Thanks Heidi. I always have a sweet tooth but stay away from donuts cause I have very little will power once I start. I opt for 1 square of dark chocolate and it has to be individually wrapped or I will eat the entire bar. I like the motto, “Know yourself and know you can do it!!!!”

  15. Lorena flournoy - October 12, 2017

    I love donuts so this is perfect!

  16. Mary - October 12, 2017

    Donuts are wonderful and so yummy.

  17. Desiree - October 12, 2017

    I love you zest for life and common sense approach to exercise. Thank you for being an inspiration and for being real enough to do a do not post!

  18. Sharon allen - October 12, 2017

    I LOVE DONUTS!! Bottom line!!! Help!!

  19. Ann S. - October 12, 2017

    Love this!! If I tell myself I can never have something I love, all I do is think about it. Better to have it with rules. Sometimes I end up just wanting a bite and that’s plenty.

  20. Greta - October 12, 2017

    I eat donuts at work at least once a week. People always make comments like, “How do you stay so skinny?” In reality, I don’t deprive myself of foods I love. I just have them in moderation.

  21. Kelly Schaefer - October 12, 2017

    I used this trick for the first time this week. I only get 2 high carb days on the app but it was so nice to have a treat after my shake while headed to the gym!! Thank you for all the great tips!!

  22. Jennifer - October 12, 2017

    It feels great to empower yourself by making good choices for your health. You can do it!!!

  23. Daisyree - October 12, 2017

    I love this soooo much!!!!! It reminds me of the importance of balance in everything! You can have goals and not have to obsess about them but through balance you can achieve your goals and still live your life and enjoy the moments ❤️❤️❤️❤️

  24. Melissa Bruhl - October 12, 2017

    I love the balanced approach and thought process!

  25. Chris pitzka - October 12, 2017

    Love this cause your real and eat donuts

  26. Stefanie - October 12, 2017

    Love this approach! It’s sustainable and who doesn’t love Dohnuts?!? 🍩 I love that I can be an example of healthy eating to my girls and show them that treats are a good part of that.

  27. Debra Caudy - October 12, 2017

    I love chocolate covered cake donuts, I have been avoiding them trying to loose weight. My first job was working in a donut shop and my love of donuts was born. I didn’t think it was ok to eat one while trying to gain my health back. Thank you for helping me to remove the quilt.

  28. Monica Cates - October 12, 2017

    Love this post. Funny but true!!

  29. Ashley - October 3, 2017

    That slippery slope is hard for me to stay away from! I’ve read about your guys “trigger foods” and can completely see the truth of it… my problem is I feel like anything that is an indulging food for me is a trigger food, and next thing I know the whole days nutrition is blown! I’ve gotta find that balance!! Betcha can’t eat just one seems to be my motto, and not a good one either!!

  30. Teri Savolskis - October 3, 2017

    Love this strategy for an eating plan that isn’t constant deprivation! I’m finding that I fail miserably when the approach is rigid and allows for a periodic cheat. The connotation of a cheat alone mentally puts me in a place that is negative.

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