A typical fast food meal of a bacon cheeseburger and chips could – strictly speaking – offend at least 13 religions and over 60 per cent of the world’s population. This is because it contains:

  • Beef – Hindus, Buddhists, Rastafarians and Sikhs avoid it, as do Zoroastrians when in mourning or on monthly holy days. After eating beef, Jews have to wait an hour before they can eat cheese. Russian and Greek Orthodox monks go without beef (and the cheese and bacon) on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Muslims can’t eat beef unless it has been slaughtered in the name of Allah. Roman Catholics abstain from eating beef (and bacon) on Fridays.
  • Bacon – Jews, Buddhists, Muslims and Seventh Day Adventists avoid it. So do Zoroastrians (see ‘beef’ above).
  • Cheese – Seventh Day Adventists and Jains avoid it.
  • Bread Taoists abstain from it because worms feed where grain is stored.
  • Chips – Hindus avoid them because they believe that salty foods arouse lust and rage.
  • Pickle and ketchup – Hare Krishna cannot eat these because they contain vinegar.
  • Cola – Mormons abstain from it because caffeine upsets the body, which is the temple of God.


In addition, Jains (see ‘cheese’ above) hardly eat anything. Cola, cheese, bacon, beef, pickle, ketchup and chips are all banned from their menus. Moreover, if the bread contained sesame seeds, they couldn’t eat that either because they believe that all living things have souls.


There are, of course, a number of people who wouldn’t touch a fast food bacon cheeseburger and chips for other reasons.