Women who eat late meals at night have a bigger chance of getting breast cancer, according to a study by the Chinese University of Hong Kong (CUHK).
The study, conducted by the Jockey Club School of Public Health and Primary Care, interviewed more than 1,835 women aged between 20 and 84 from 2012 to 2015.
Shelly Tse, an associate professor in CUHK’s School of Public Health, said the findings suggest that eating between 10 p.m. and 4 a.m. will increase such risks by 1.5 times as the digestive process could disrupt the hormonal balance, Apple Daily reports.
If a woman eats food with animal fat, the risk would be about 1.73 times. Those eating food high in carbohydrates would face 1.58 to 1.79 higher risk.
There were 3,868 new cases of breast cancer in 2014, with 57 percent occurring in women aged between 40 and 59, according to the Hong Kong Cancer Registry.
One in 16 women would contract breast cancer during her lifetime, it said.
Tse said the study could trigger more discussions and would need more evidence to support the suggested correlation such as via massive blood sampling.
Tse was quoted by Ming Pao Daily as saying that women should avoid eating after 10 p.m. and if eating is unavoidable they should pick vegetables and fruits over carbohydrates.
CUHK, University of Toronto in Canada and Utrecht University in the Netherlands are collaborating on an innovative approach to public health globally.
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