Three in five older people will ration their heating this winter amid fears over high energy bills, according to a new survey.
As many as two in five (42%) said they would also consider cutting back on food in order to meet the cost of heating their homes, the research said.
The results come as the Met Office warns of falling temperatures which could see blast of snow and icefollowing an unseasonably warm December.
Some 61% admitted they cut down energy use during the winter.
The survey of 2,000 people aged 65 and over for comparethemarket.com, also found:
Campaigners called for companies to pass on reductions in wholesale energy prices to consumers, warning many elderly people faced a greater risk of dying from the cold.
Caroline Abrahams, charity director at Age UK, said:
The research suggested the majority of elderly people relied on other measures than central heating in trying to keep warm, including wearing more clothes, using draught excluders and hanging thick curtains.