Middle class drinkers targeted in new campaign

Calories in a glass of wine = four fish fingers

A glass of wine has as many calories as four fish fingers a new Government campaign has revealed.

Middle-class drinkers are to be warned exactly how many calories are contained in a glass of wine or beer. Ministers are concerned that the average wine drinker now consumes around 2,000 calories from alcohol alone each month.

That is the equivalent of 38 extra roast beef suppers or almost 184 bags of crisps a year. Government advisers believe that drinkers who are happy to ignore warnings about alcohol’s health risks may be persuaded to limit their intake when they realise the effect on their waistline.

The Government is increasingly concerned about the alcohol intake of the middle classes. Its latest statistics suggest middle-aged, professionals are more likely to exceed recommended daily levels of alcohol consumption than the working class, with twice as many drinking each night of the week.

Additional calories do not just come from the alcohol consumed: more than one in three drinkers admit they are likely to eat more than they usually would or ditch a healthy diet when drinking above their recommended daily limits.

Almost one in three order crisps, nuts or pork scratchings to accompany a drink, while 19 per cent regularly opt for takeaway food.

Heather Caswell, of the British Nutrition Foundation, said: ‘Many women don’t know that two large glasses of white wine  provides them with nearly 20% of their daily calorie allowance, at approximately 370kcals in total.

‘Most people would baulk at consuming a full glass of single cream, but wouldn’t think twice about a couple of pints. But the calorie content is similar and, over time, excess alcohol intake is likely to lead to weight gain.’

The charity Drinkaware has launched a website to calculate calorie intake from alcohol at www.drinkaware.co.uk/tipsandtools/drink-diary.

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