Nanny state Christmas feast

For millions around the UK, Christmas Day is the family event of the year, a day of relaxation, celebration and indulgence – with Christmas dinner being the centre piece of this annual festival.

But can such merriment be accommodated by nannying public health officials? NHS guidance currently recommends that adult men should not consume more than 30 grams of saturated fat, six grams of salt, 30 grams of sugar, two units of alcohol, and 2,500 calories in a day. Given that the average person consumes over double this on Christmas day according to Wren Kitchens, 6 serious cuts would need to be made, both to the Christmas day diet and to the fun.

The table below consists of the Christmas day staples, broken down by the amount that can be consumed while staying within the NHS guidelines.


Click here to read the research in full


Key findings

A Christmas day diet will consist of the following:

  • Breakfast, which includes a quarter of a croissant, 80 per cent of a bowl of cereal, two-and-a- half slices of toast with under a tablespoon of butter and jam and twentieth of a glass of orange juice.
  • Lunch, which includes four slices of turkey with half of one roast potato, one Brussel sprout, a quarter of a parsnip, two pigs in blankets and a fifth of a teaspoon of cranberry sauce.
  • Pudding, which includes a twentieth of a slice of Christmas pudding with one teaspoon of custard.
  • Drinks, which includes one of each of the following: a tenth of a small glass of wine; a tenth of a gin and tonic; half a glass of port; half of a single measure of brandy; and a fifth of a glass of sugar free buck’s fizz.
  • Evening snacks, which includes 80 per cent of a bag of crisps, six-and-a-half peanuts, two cream crackers with 20 grams of brie and stilton.
  • There is still room for a quarter of a leftover’s turkey sandwich.
  • Other Christmas staples, such as stuffing, mulled wine and gingerbread, must be excluded to remain within the limits.
  • Salt, sugar and fat guidelines are so strict that it is impossible to get close to the recommended daily calorie intake for either men or women while observing them. For men, it is difficult to even get within 500 calories of the recommendation.
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