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J Korean Med Sci. 2010 Nov;25(11):1560-7. doi: 10.3346/jkms.2010.25.11.1560. Epub 2010 Oct 26.

Relationship between obesity and depression in the Korean working population.

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Seocho SamSung Med Clinic, Kangbuk Samsung Hospital, Seoul, Korea.


This study was conducted to investigate potential relationship between obesity and depression in Korean working population. A total of 8,121 workers, aged 21-75 yr, participated in this nationwide cross-section research. The participants asked to complete a questionnaire regarding the socio-demographic factors and health-related behaviors, height, and weight. To measure degree of depression, the Korean version of the Center for Epidemiologic Studies-Depression scale (CES-D) was used. Chi-square test and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed to examine the degree of association between obesity and depression. Compared to normal-weight women, overweight women had a lower adjusted odds ratio (OR) for depression (OR=0.65, 95% confidence interval 0.46 to 0.97). Underweight (1.42, 0.83 to 2.44) and obese women (BMI ≥30) had higher ORs for depression (1.47, 0.64 to 3.36), but these were insignificant. Compared to normal-weight men, obese men had higher crude ORs (1.94, 1.03 to 3.62) and adjusted ORs (1.77, 0.89 to 3.53) for depression, while underweight and overweight men showed no significant differences. These findings suggest that being overweight may protect Korean female worker against depression.


Body Mass Index; Depression; Obesity; Workers

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