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Half Of All American Workers Don't Take Lunch Breaks, Study Finds

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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) -- We all need a little recharge in the middle of a long work day, but are lunch breaks becoming a thing of the past? A new study shows an alarming number of American workers rarely step away from their job to eat.

Half of all American workers say they rarely have time to step away from their desk and warm up that microwave meal.

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Those surveyed say intense workloads and pressure from managers leads employees to stay put during the day.

Experts say this may be the new norm.

"Work now is not a single person doing a single job to a single supervisor," said Ravi Kudesia, a professor in the Human Resources Management Department at Temple University. "So the ability to block out and schedule and block out a single concrete amount of time is not really there."

Kudesia says there are benefits to working throughout your day.

"The positive side is that it leads us to drive our energy into our work, which means we perform better," said Kudesia. "On the negative side, it leads to burnout."

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Kudesia adds the best thing to do if you're trying to make a deadline while your stomach is growling is to take a micro-break.

"Probably the most effective thing you can do as an employee is do what are called micro-breaks," said Kudesia.

The bottom line here is a 30-minute lunch break just is not possible for many in different industries today, so workers in the study say they keep a snack drawer fully stocked. Experts say the key is to make sure those snacks have substance.

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