Many “ready to drink” pre-mixed spirits are packed with excessive sugar and hidden calories and should be subject to a sugar tax like fizzy drinks, health experts say.

Action on Sugar is concerned people are consuming more than they should, without realising it.

The team based at Queen Mary University of London looked at hundreds of products sold in UK shops and online.

Some contained eight teaspoons of sugar in one small 250ml can.

Gin in a tin

The sweetest gin and mixer was Classic Combinations Pink Gin and Tonic, containing 27g of sugar (nearly seven teaspoons) in a 250ml can – the same sugar content as Coke.

An Archers Schnapps and Lemonade and a Malibu and Cola both contained 33g per 250ml can.

Nine out

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