According to a new Government campaign on Britain's drinking culture, the average wine drinker gains as much as half of stone of fat in a year, due to high calories in alcohol.
The drive will be focusing on the high calorific content of alcohol, in the hope of prompting people to cut down on their drinking.
AdvertisementThe campaign has highlighted that the average wine drinker consumes an extra 2,000 calories a month, the equivalent of 184 bags of crisps.
Not many middle class drinkers realize that a couple sharing a bottle of red wine a night are both consuming the equivalent of a Snickers chocolate bar in alcohol.
This implies that a woman would consume eight days' worth of calories in a week, which would mean putting more than two stone in fat within a year, unless extra calories were burned off in exercise or food intake was reduced to compensate.
If a man drinks five pints of lager a week, he would consume 44,200 calories in alcohol a year, which is equivalent to 221 doughnuts.
This could make him gain 12 pounds of fat unless he cut his diet elsewhere.
A spokesman for the Department of Health said that a YouGov poll found the average wine drinker admitted to consuming around a bottle of wine per week.
Another survey conducted by the Know Your Limits campaign found that one in three drinkers said that they order crisps, nuts or pork scratching with their alcohol, which made them put on more calories.
The survey's findings also revealed that one-fifth of drinkers would grab a burger or takeaway when consuming more than two pints of beer or two glasses of wine.
"Many women don't know that two large glasses of white wine not only puts them over the recommended daily limit for alcohol consumption, but also provides them with nearly 20 per cent of their daily calorie allowance, at approximately 370kcals in total," the Telegraph quoted Heather Caswell, spokesperson for the British Nutrition Foundation, as saying.
"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.
"Sticking to sensible drinking habits and keeping to the recommended units will not only help keep off those extra pounds but will also help decrease your risk of serious health problems, such as some types of cancer and liver disease," he added.