London: While it may be a Herculean task for anyone to calculate how much his wife or girl friend talks in a day, a study has found an average woman spends five hours a day gossiping.

Whether they are at home or at work, females natter for around 298 minutes daily, which is the equivalent of more than a third of their waking hours, researchers in Britain have found.

Discussing other people's problems, who's dating who and other people's children form the basis of most chats. Other topics most regularly include sex, shopping and soaps; daily reported the study as stating.

The study found women spend 24 minutes a day discussing their weight, diets and dress size. One third said they spend a part of their day discussing what they are eating for lunch, while a quarter regularly exchanges recipes.

The survey was commissioned to mark wine firm First Cape Cafe Collection's search to find Britain's Queen of Chat.

Spokesman Steve Barton said, "Women are renowned for their ability to chat and men are fascinated by what they find to talk about when they get together.

"I'm pleased to see complaining about their partners was at the bottom of their list, though. It is also interesting to see how the conversation differs between women talking to each other and women talking to their partners."

Other topics include what cosmetic surgery procedures they would like, what the mother-in-law has said, and which celebrities they fantasize about.

Most women prefer chatting to their friends to anyone else but say they talk to their partner, mum and their best friend about completely different things.

The study revealed husbands are most likely to get the work talk whereas a woman is more likely to gossip with her best friend.

However, 36 percent of women say they cannot be trusted to keep a friend's secret and that they regularly tell their partner things they are told in confidence.

(Agencies)