Send to

Choose Destination
Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry. 2012 Jan 10;36(1):85-91. doi: 10.1016/j.pnpbp.2011.10.001. Epub 2011 Oct 6.

Personality traits and childhood trauma as correlates of metabolic risk factors: the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA).

Author information

Department of Psychiatry, Leiden University Medical Centre, Leiden, The Netherlands.



Personality and childhood trauma may affect cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk. However, evidence for an association with metabolic risk factors for CVD is limited and ambiguous. Moreover, despite their interrelatedness, personality and childhood trauma were not yet studied simultaneously. Therefore, we aimed to explore whether personality and childhood trauma are correlates of metabolic risk factors.


Among 2755 participants of the Netherlands Study of Depression and Anxiety (NESDA), we investigated through linear regression models whether Big Five personality traits (i.e., extraversion, openness, agreeableness, neuroticism and conscientiousness) and childhood trauma type (i.e., emotional neglect, and psychological, physical and sexual abuse) were correlates of metabolic risk factors (i.e., lipids, waist circumference (WC), glucose and blood pressure). Basic covariates (i.e., age, sex and income level), lifestyle, severity of depressive symptoms and years of education were taken into account.


Openness was the most robust favorable correlate, and sexual abuse was the most robust unfavorable correlate of lipids and WC, and of overall metabolic risk (β=-.070; p<.001 and β=.035; p=.04, respectively).


People with a low openness trait and those who experienced childhood sexual abuse are at higher risk of dyslipidemia and abdominal obesity.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

Supplemental Content

Loading ...
Support Center