NCHS Brief Looks at Depression and Obesity

A new data brief from the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) examines the relationship between obesity and depression. It found that 43 percent of adults with depression were obese and that adults with depression were more likely to be obese, particularly women. In addition, as the severity of depression symptoms increased, so did the proportion of those with obesity. And over half of people whose symptoms were not relieved by medication were obese. The report observes, “It is not clear whether depression or obesity occurred first because they were both measured at the same time. Other studies have shown a bidirectional relationship, meaning obesity increases risk of depression and depression increases risk of obesity.” The data is drawn from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), 2005-2010.

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Posted in Issue 19 (October 20), Update, Volume 33 (2014)

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