TIME

If you’re sampling sweets every night—and you aren’t super disciplined during the day—then yes, dessert is that bad for you.

Of course, there are different types of desserts. Dark chocolate, nuts, fruit and mishmashes of those ingredients generally aren’t a problem. Knock yourself out. But we’re talking about the oldies and goodies here: Cake. Ice Cream. Cookies.

“Combinations of sugar, white flour, butter and trans fat are diabetes on a plate,” says Dr. Walter Willett, chair of the department of nutrition at the Harvard School of Public Health. Studies have linked these ingredients to obesity and increased rates of type 2 diabetes. So if you’re eating dessert most nights, you’re asking for trouble, Willett says.

Of course, when it comes to anything diet related, there’s always a gray area. And for dessert lovers, that gray area exists if you’re very active during the day and you generally eat a diet…

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