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J Am Geriatr Soc. 2011 Jan;59(1):67-72. doi: 10.1111/j.1532-5415.2010.03228.x.

Depressive symptom clusters are differentially associated with general and visceral obesity.

Author information

1
Department of Old Age Psychiatry, De Gelderse Roos, Arnhem, The Netherlands. r.marijnissen@degelderseroos.nl

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To examine the relationship between obesity and depressive symptoms taking into account different measures for obesity (body mass index (BMI), waist circumference (WC), and waist-to-hip ratio (WHR)) and different depressive symptom clusters.

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional population-based survey.

SETTING:

Baseline data of the Nijmegen Biomedical Study.

PARTICIPANTS:

One thousand two hundred eighty-four persons aged 50 to 70.

MEASUREMENTS:

Obesity (BMI, WC, and WHR) and depressive symptoms were measured, the latter using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI). Principal components analysis of the BDI items yielded two factors, one representing a cognitive-affective symptom cluster and the other a somatic-affective symptom cluster. Multiple regression analyses corrected for confounders were conducted for each measure of obesity, with separate models testing the BDI sum score and the depression symptom clusters.

RESULTS:

BMI was significantly associated with BDI sum score (β=0.12, P<.001) and the cognitive- (β=0.08, P=.008) and somatic-affective symptom clusters (β=0.10, P=.001). WC (β=0.11, P<.001) and WHR (β=0.07, P=.004) were specifically associated with the somatic-affective symptom cluster.

CONCLUSION:

Visceral obesity, which is more indicative of vascular risk than BMI, is specifically associated with somatic-affective depressive symptom cluster, which might suggest that these symptoms are primarily due to a (subclinical) somatic condition.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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