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New study reveals that your partner might secretly be making you fatter

I don't know about you, but I think there are many varied and wonderful reasons to be in a relationship. Some of us love having the companionship of another like-minded soul, others want someone capable of fulfilling all their sexual needs. Whatever it is, I'm not here to judge. You do you.

For me, though, my eventual partner has to be someone willing to indulge in the most important thing in life: food. Yeah, it's important to find someone you care about, respect, and enjoy spending time with, but how can I be with someone if we can't share Chicken McNuggets? Could I love someone who wilfully eats Hawaiian pizza?

Long story short, being in a relationship with someone inevitably means that your relationship with food has to change as well. But a new study from Central Queensland University in Australia says that if you're one of those lonelyhearts out there, there's at least one good reason to stay single.

This particular study looked at more than 15,000 people over the course of a decade, tracking data like their lifestyle habits (including how active they are), how much television they watched, not to mention how often each of these people ordered takeout. What they found was rather interesting.

The study found that in 10 years, people in relationships weighed on average 12.7 pounds more than their single counterparts. That weight difference might be down to a weird statistical quirk, but what's even more telling is that people in relationships also gained an average of 3.9 pounds a year, compared to those who spend Valentine's Day alone.

So, unfortunately, it looks as if the very act of falling in love is enough to slowly cause you to balloon out of your jeans. But why exactly is that? When you think about it, there are actually many reasons for you to pack on the pounds when you're in a relationship.

The researchers touched on the social aspect of having a partner, saying that "marriage (or de-facto relationships) comes with spousal obligations such as regular family meals," while lead scientist Stephanie Schoeppe told New Scientist that being in a comfortable loving partnership actually causes you to let yourself go:

When couples don’t need to look attractive and slim to attract a partner, they may feel more comfortable in eating more, or eating more foods high in fat and sugar.

If I were you, I wouldn't rush to break up with my girlfriend or boyfriend just yet: New Scientist also noted that people in relationships often ate healthier than their single counterparts, going a long way toward reinforcing the idea that dieting with somebody you love doesn't always have to end in disaster.

While they may include more healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables and less fast food, people often consume larger portion sizes and more calories in the company of others than they do alone, resulting in increased energy intake.

Well, there you have it, ladies and gentlemen. Yes, your significant other may be slowly making you fat, but given the option of being single with a killer bod, I'd rather have somebody I love to tenderly feed me tiramisu. Plus, when you think about it, that little bit of extra insulation makes cuddling slightly more pleasurable. Silver linings and all that.