WE have all been there. We do not want to, we know it is wrong and we are sure it is something we will regret — but there is something about that glistening brown heap of flesh that is simply irresistible...

The doner kebab is one of the most decadent legal vices known to mankind, so it is perhaps no surprise that a recent study of kebabs in Barnet and 75 other local authorities has shown most to be little more than a heart attack on a plate, containing “shocking” levels of fat, salt and calories.

According to the Local Authority Coordinators of Regulatory Services (Lacors), the average doner, out of the 494 sampled, contained almost 1,000 calories and that is without salad or sauces. This is half a woman’s guideline daily amount (GDA) – along with 98 per cent of an adult’s GDA of salt and 148 per cent of their GDA of saturated fat.

The worst kebab contained 277 per cent of the recommended daily salt intake for adults.

Under the supermarket ‘traffic lights’ system, red marks would be earned by 97 per cent for fat, 98 per cent for saturated fat and 96 per cent for salt.

The report describes a doner kebab as a Turkish national dish made of meat cooked on a vertical spit and sliced off to order. Lacors chairman Geoffrey Theobald called the results “a serious cause for concern”.

The study also found problems with food labelling: 15 per cent of kebabs contained beef that was not declared on the label and 35 per cent of the labels listed different meat species than that actually contained in the kebab.

Six kebabs tested positive for pork when it had not been declared as an ingredient, of which two were claimed as Halal.

“It is totally unacceptable that people with certain faiths are unknowingly eating meats that are against their beliefs,” said Mr Theobald.

“Labelling is a safeguard for people to help them make informed choices so need to be accurate.”

However, despite the figures, London contained the second least calorific kebabs in the UK, after Northern Ireland, whereas Scotland contained the most.

The capital also contained the least salty kebabs in the country, with an average of 4.7 grams per serving, compared with 6.7 grams per serving in the south west.