Cookie Math: How Many Calories Does Santa Eat On Christmas Eve?
‘Tis Season For Cookie Eating
From gathering with family, to decorating the tree, or singing carols through the neighborhood: traditions are baked into the Christmas season. Speaking of baking, one beloved tradition is leaving a plate of cookies and a glass of milk out for Dear Old Saint Nick—who could definitely use a little pick-me-up along his improbably-long route on Christmas Eve.
Speaking of improbably-tall orders: KURU Footwear crunched some cookie calculations and concluded that with Claus clocking in at 395,830,485 homes, he’ll consume 71.2 billion calories from milk and cookies alone.
Keep reading for a breakdown on those Christmas cookie calories and what they do for Santa’s holiday weight gain, plus how far he’d have to tread to walk it all off. (Maybe that’s how he spends the other 364 nights of the year: walking!)
How Many Calories Does Santa Eat On Christmas Eve?
Santa will visit somewhere in the neighborhood of 395 million homes on Christmas Eve, and for these totals we’re assuming he’s polite enough to eat one cookie and drink one glass of milk in each home he stops at. (And the reindeer usually get a carrot to munch on, too!)
All told Santa could consume 71.2 billion calories before the night ends. More than half of those calories come from the legendary dairy consumption, 40.4 billion or so. One cookie apiece at each home works out to about another 30.9 billion calories.
How Much Weight Does Santa Gain On Christmas Eve?
A well-fed belly is part of Santa’s iconic look. But you might imagine he gains some weight after eating so many Christmas Eve cookies and drinking so many glasses of milk!
If Santa eats 71.2 billion calories on Christmas Eve, he would gain about 20.4 million pounds. Seeing as he visits hundreds of millions of homes with multiple presents for each, it’s probably still a safe bet the sleigh comes home lighter than it left, though. Much to the reindeer’s relief.
How Far Would Santa Have To Walk To Burn Off His Christmas Eve Calories?
Santa Claus knows all about covering extreme distances and doing so quickly! If he decided he wanted to do some walking to offset all those Christmas cookies, he’d have yet another long journey ahead of him.
How long of a journey, exactly? Well, Santa would need to walk 1.1 trillion steps, which amounts to 503 million miles, to burn off every last calorie from Christmas Eve.
How Many Carrot Calories Do Santa’s Reindeer Eat On Christmas Eve?
In addition to baking Santa cookies, many families leave out some carrots to feed the reindeer (who historically don’t enjoy having their noses, red or otherwise, rubbed in things they’re missing out on).
If every house on the trip leaves out one carrot, that amounts to 395 million! Assuming the reindeer split those carrots up evenly, each of the nine will eat more than 44,000 carrots. That comes out to about 2.3 billion calories for each of them.
Santa can expect to eat more cookies and drink more milk than you or I will ever come close to consuming in our lifetimes. But, just like the secret behind his delivery speed, we imagine there is magic at work when it comes to accounting for Santa’s Christmas calories.
But if you get around on your feet instead of via flying reindeer, make sure you wear comfortable shoes to keep you moving.
Methodology and Sources
KURU Footwear sourced calorie data from the Calorie Control Council database to determine the number of calories in a chocolate chip cookie, glass of milk, and carrots.
We then used the Washington Post’s estimates of how many houses Santa visits on Christmas Eve, and assumed he’ll eat a cookie and glass of milk in each house. We estimated that a carrot would be left at each house for the reindeer, and split the calories between Dasher, Dancer, Prancer, Vixen, Comet, Cupid, Donner, Blitzen, and Rudolph.
Omni Calculator’s Steps to Calories Calculator was used to determine the number of steps Santa would have to take to burn off the calories, and Inch Calculator to determine how many pounds would be gained.
- Calorie Control Council – Food Calorie Calculator
- Washington Post – The breathtaking scale of Santa Claus’s task on Christmas Eve
- Omni Calculator – Steps to Calories Calculator
- Inch Calculator – Calories to Pounds & Ounces Conversion
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