Admit you're trying to lose weight and suddenly everyone around you is a doctor.
Some will tell you to steer clear of sugar and salt while others blame carbs and fat for unwanted weight gain. But if you ask Dr. Patricia Lopez-Legarrea of the Autonomous University of Chile, she'll tell you late-night dinners are adding inches to your waistline.
To support her theory, Lopez-Legarrea looked at the eating habits of 5,500 Chileans and found that the average BMI for those who ate late was higher than those who stopped eating earlier in the day, The Daily Mail reports. The difference in BMI can be equated to an additional two or three pounds on a person.
The debate over whether or not late-night eating causes weight gain has been a confusing one. Just last month researchers in London stated that late dinners posed no increased risk of obesity in children. However, the study's author, Gerda Pot, says the findings could be a result of a limited test group, United Press International reports.
And in 2014, researchers in California found that implementing a strict 12-hour fast every day, with no other dietary changes was sufficient to maintain body weight, the BBC reported.
One thing reseachers aren't arguing about, however, is the fact that larger waistlines pose very serious health risks. Researchers at the University of Oxford announced at the 2016 European Obesity Summit that bigger waistlines are linked to an increased risk of prostate cancer.
According to the Harvard school of public health, large waists are also associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and death.
If late-night eating is keeping you (and your weight) up, try moving your dinnertime up and decreasing the size of your late-night snacks. Eating a more filling breakfast and lunch can also curb late-night cravings.
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