The typical 50-year-old has only 1,990 calories each day, does at least four forms of exercise and treats themselves to just one piece of junk food each week
Researchers found the average 25-year-old consumes over 2,300 calories a day, exercises only three times a week and munches on 12 types of junk food a month.
But the typical 50-year-old has only 1,990 calories each day, does at least four forms of exercise and treats themselves to just one piece of junk food each week.
And while those in their mid-20s have three takeaways a month, the older generation have only one.
The study, commissioned by global nutrition and direct selling company Herbalife, quizzed 4,000 Brits on their diet and lifestyle.
Neil Spiers, Herbalife’s Regional Vice President, said: “The results of the study will be surprising to most as it’s natural to think that the younger you are, the fitter you are.
“It seems many young people are making the mistake of underestimating the benefit of a more balanced, holistic approach to diet and lifestyle.
“It’s great to think that the older generation are showing the youngsters the way when it comes to healthier living.”
The nationwide research of 16-80 year olds quizzed them on their health and exercise habits.
It found the over-50s are more likely to walk as much as they can during the day – to the shops or with the dog – while those in their 20s tend to drive everywhere.
But when it comes to excuses for not exercising, over a third (36 per cent) of 25 year olds blame not having enough time, compared to 22 per cent of over-50s.
The research found 70 per cent of Brits see themselves as healthy – exercising for 27 minutes a day, at least three times a week, opting to go for a walk, run, cycle or gym.
A quarter of Brits polled cycle to see friends or go to the shops, and 70 per cent take the stairs instead of the lift.
Nearly four in 10 walk to the train station or to work in a bid to keep fit.
The study also found the average Brit believes they are overweight by nine pounds.
Over a quarter of the population are currently on a diet – with the ‘low fat’ (30 per cent), ‘low carb’ (14 per cent) and ‘detox’ (eight per cent) diets being the most popular.
And they would wish to lose 13 pounds for them to be their ideal weight.
The study also highlighted the lengths people will go to in order to hide their flab.
Nearly a quarter have fibbed about the amount they eat, one in five has lied about their weight and 12 per cent have cut labels out of clothing which revealed their real size.
A cheeky 16 per cent have turned to slimming aids without telling anyone and seven per cent have uploaded misleading pictures on Facebook.
And 30 per cent have ‘binge dieted’ to fit into a dress or to look good in a bikini in time for a holiday.