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How Many Cookies Cause 1 Pound of Weight Gain? A Nutritionist Answers

This is how many cookies you need to eat to gain a pound, claims Andrew Holmes.

Have you ever gone on a Girl Scout Cookie binge and felt like you gained a few pounds overnight? Maybe you have even stepped on the scale the next day and watched the numbers creep up. Andrew Holmes (@andrewholmes79) is a fitness and weight loss coach who regularly shares videos setting the weight loss record straight. In a recent viral video, he discusses how much you actually have to eat to gain weight. "How many cookies do you think it takes to gain a single pound of body fat?" he asks at the start of the video. Here is everything you need to know about how many calories you have to eat to gain one pound of fat, we also asked for the opinion of a Board Certified Sports Dietitian.

How Many Cookies Result in a One Pound Weight Gain?

@andrewholmes79 How many cookies to gain 1 pound of fat? #fatlosstips #weightlosstips #fitnesstips #healthyeating #nutritiontips ♬ original sound – Andrew | Weight Loss & Mindset

He starts off the clip by pointing to a few cookies, and adding more to the pile. "This many? Nope. How about this many still no. How about this many? Not even close. You'd have to eat all of these cookies to gain a single pound of body fat," he says. 

He Says You Have to Eat 3,500 Calories to Gain a Pound


"There's approximately 3,500 calories stored in a single pound of body fat, and all of this is exactly 3,500 calories," he reveals. 

Related: The 11 Top Proteins for Weight Loss, According to Dave Asprey

If You Do Weight More, It's Likely Body Fat


If the scale does move up, don't fret. "But most of you will step on the scale the day after having just a few cookies and see it spike way up a few pounds and freak the f**k out thinking that you gained a few pounds of fat when in reality you were only up a little bit of fat and mostly water weight," he says. 

Don't Let a Few Cookies Ruin Your Diet

Unhealthy Chocolate Cookies with Vanilla Cream Filling

Don't allow your cookie binge to derail your diet, he warns. "You see, it's never just a couple cookies that cause you to gain fat or wreck your progress," he reveals. "It's you are spiraling out of control because you don't get back on track right away."

An RDN Confirms


"I understand where he is going with this," says Tara Collingwood, MS, RDN, CSSD, LD/N, ACSM-CPT, a Board Certified Sports Dietitian. "The math is correct that 3,500 calories is one pound of fat on paper." However, she explains that it also depends on when and how you are eating all of those calories. "If you eat a lot of calories all at once and just sit and don't have any activity, they are more likely to be stored than if you move after or if you spread those calories out throughout the day," she points out. 

Related: Sadie Rigby in Two-Piece Workout Look Reveals Why She Prioritizes Free Weights Over Machines

Don't Let Binges Derail Your Diet, She Adds

Chocolate chip cookies with flaky salt on a cooling rack, homemade freshly baked cookies

"I like his message that sometimes we go above our calorie needs but don't let it derail you," she continues. "Get right back on your plan and don't allow one bad moment to turn into days of a slide." On the other hand, she doesn't recommend going on a 1,200 calorie cookie "binge"!

💪🔥Body Booster: Try and remember that 3,500 calories roughly equates to a pound of fat. 

Leah Groth
Leah Groth has decades of experience covering all things health, wellness and fitness related. Read more