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Death of the lunch hour?

London - The average lunch break now lasts just 28 minutes because workers are too busy to take a full hour, research shows.

Two thirds of staff do not leave the workplace to eat, while 12 percent never or hardly ever take a lunch break.

The research, by Mastercard and pollster Ipsos MORI, shows that just 17 percent of British workers take a full lunch hour. Picture: Ian Landsberg. Credit: INDEPENDENT MEDIA

The research, by Mastercard and pollster Ipsos MORI, shows that just 17 percent of British workers take a full lunch hour, with most of those who don’t manage it blaming lack of time.

According to the survey of more than 1 300 people aged 16 to 75, 66 percent of workers don’t leave their workplace to eat lunch, rising to 70 percent for those working in offices.

Asked why they didn’t leave work at lunchtime more often, two fifths said they did not have the time.

In July, a study by experts from Cambridge University blamed unhealthy office lifestyles for as many as 90 000 unnecessary deaths each year.

They said adults should do at least an hour’s exercise every day to undo the harm caused by sitting at their desks for up to eight hours.

Brisk walking or a steady bike ride for 60 minutes once a day would slash workers’ risk of dying prematurely by 60 percent, according to the research.

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