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Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2001 May;25 Suppl 1:S5-9.

Obesity and mental illness in a representative sample of young women.

Author information

1
Technische Universität Dresden, Department of Clinical Psyvhology, D-01062 Dresden, Germany. ebecker@rcs.urz.tu-dresden.de

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To investigate the relation between mental disorders and weight, especially obesity.

DESIGN:

Epidemiological study of mental disorders with a representative sample of young women.

SUBJECTS:

A total of 2064 women, age 18-25 y, living in Dresden, Germany.

MEASUREMENTS:

Verbal reports of body mass index, structured clinical interview for psychological disorders.

RESULTS:

We found an association between psychological disorders and weight. Obese women had the highest rate of mental disorders overall, and they had higher rates of all subgroups of mental disorders, although many differences were not statistically significant. Most importantly, obese women suffered from an anxiety disorder significantly more often than women who were not obese. The observed differences were independent of socioeconomic status.

CONCLUSIONS:

In young women, obesity is related to increased rates of mental disorders, most notably anxiety disorders. Future longitudinal research will have to determine the causal relationships behind this correlation.

PMID:
11466578
DOI:
10.1038/sj.ijo.0801688
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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