Obesity and depression may be linked

June 2, 2008

A major review in Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice reveals that research indicates people who are obese may be more likely to become depressed, and people who are depressed may be more likely to become obese.

To understand the potential links between obesity and depression, researchers led by Sarah M. Markowitz, M.S., examined the correlational data that suggest a connection between the conditions and found evidence for causal pathways from obesity to depression and depression to obesity.

People who are obese may be more likely to become depressed because they experience themselves as in poor health and are dissatisfied with their appearance. This occurrence was particularly prevalent among women and those of high socio-economic status.

People who are depressed may be more likely to become obese because of physiological changes in their hormone and immune systems that occur in depression. Also, they have more difficulty taking good care of themselves because of symptoms and consequences of depression, such as difficulty adhering to fitness regiments, overeating, and having negative thoughts.

Treatments such as exercise and stress reduction can help to manage both obesity and depression at the same time. Potentially, dieting, which can worsen mood, and antidepressants, which can cause weight gain, should be minimized.

"The treatment of depression and obesity should be integrated," the authors conclude. "This way, healthcare providers are working together to treat both conditions, rather than each in isolation."

Source: Wiley

Explore further: Now you like it, now you don't: Brain stimulation can change how much we enjoy and value music

Related Stories

Now you like it, now you don't: Brain stimulation can change how much we enjoy and value music

November 20, 2017
Enjoyment of music is considered a subjective experience; what one person finds gratifying, another may find irritating. Music theorists have long emphasized that although musical taste is relative, our enjoyment of music, ...

The story of America, as told through diet books

November 14, 2017
"The South Beach Diet" sold 23 million diet books. Dr. Atkins sold another 15 million. Even lesser-known diet books like Christian best-sellers "The Maker's Diet" regularly sell millions of copies.

Obesity linked with depressive symptoms, increased disease activity in women with lupus

November 5, 2017
Obesity is independently associated with worse patient-reported outcomes in women with systemic lupus erythematosus, including disease activity, depressive symptoms, pain and fatigue, according to new research findings presented ...

Both obese and anorexic women have low levels of 'feel good' neurosteroid

November 10, 2017
Women at opposite extremes of the weight spectrum have low levels of the neuroactive steroid allopregnanolone, according to new research published in the journal Neuropsychopharmacology.

Why we still don't understand sleep, and why it matters

October 23, 2017
One of my first jobs was to keep a lookout for lions. There are some occupations that are not suitable for someone with untreated narcolepsy and this is probably one of them. I was 22, a recent zoology graduate studying meerkats ...

New study reveals sleep deprivation disrupts brain-cell communication

November 6, 2017
Ever sleep poorly and then walk out of the house without your keys? Or space out on the highway and nearly hit a stalled car?

Recommended for you

Sunrise and sunset guide daily activities of city-dwellers

November 21, 2017
Despite artificial lightning and social conventions, the dynamics of daylight still influence the daily activities of people living in modern, urban environments, according to new research published in PLOS Computational ...

Older men need more protein to maintain muscles

November 21, 2017
The amount of protein recommended by international guidelines is not sufficient to maintain muscle size and strength in older men, according to a new study.

Exercising and eating well are greater contributors to health than standing at work

November 21, 2017
By now you've probably heard the edict from the health community: Sitting is the new smoking. Perhaps you've converted to a standing desk, or maybe you have a reminder on your phone to get up once an hour and walk around ...

Motorcycle crashes cause five times as many deaths as car accidents, six times the health costs

November 20, 2017
Motorcycle accidents are costly in terms of lives and health care costs. Compared with car accidents, motorcycle accidents cause 3 times the injuries, 6 times the medical costs and 5 times the deaths, found new research in ...

Dog ownership linked to lower mortality

November 17, 2017
A team of Swedish scientists have used national registries of more than 3.4 million Swedes aged 40 to 80 to study the association between dog ownership and cardiovascular health. Their study shows that dog owners had a lower ...

New shoe makes running 4 percent easier, 2-hour marathon possible, study shows

November 17, 2017
Eleven days after Boulder-born Shalane Flanagan won the New York City Marathon in new state-of-the-art racing flats known as "4%s," University of Colorado Boulder researchers have published the study that inspired the shoes' ...

2 comments

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

Mercury_01
5 / 5 (1) Jun 02, 2008
No!, ya don't say...
SmartK8
5 / 5 (1) Jun 03, 2008
What's next ? Obesity vs food ?

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.