A new survey has found that younger people are twice as likely to miss work through illness as their older colleagues. According to the figures, under-30s are more likely to stay at home while suffering from colds and flu, allergies and intolerances than over-55s, the Telegraph reported.
Younger people were also more likely to take time off work due to stress, tiredness and feeling run down, which the older contingent said would not be a reason to call in sick.
Almost one in five people aged 18 to 29 admitted they had missed work because they were "too hung-over", but 85 per cent of over-55s said they would only miss work if they were bedridden.
The survey of 3,000 people suggested that the higher rates of illness in younger people could be explained by the impact of unhealthy lifestyles.
It found that men and women aged 30 and under were more likely to eat junk food like ready meals and takeaways than older people, and were half as likely to eat the five daily portions of fruit and vegetables that experts recommend.
"Today's fast paced, work-hard play-hard lifestyle appears to be taking its toll on the younger generation," said Peter Morton, the marketing manager of multivitamin manufacturer Multibionta, which commissioned the survey.
"A poor immune system caused by smoking, drinking and a lack of nutritionally beneficial food, lends itself to people being more susceptible to coughs and colds which in turn can lead to sick days," he added.