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Rev Assoc Med Bras (1992). 2019 Jun 3;65(5):731-738. doi: 10.1590/1806-9282.65.5.731.

Depression, anthropometric parameters, and body image in adults: a systematic review.

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Federal University of Espírito Santo, Postgraduate Program on Collective Health, Vitória, ES, Brasil.



To evaluate the association between depression, anthropometric parameters and body image in adults through a systematic review of the literature.


Medline, Lilacs and PsycInfo databases were searched by two independent reviewers up to August 2018, without language restriction, including cross-sectional, case-control, and cohort studies in adults (18-65 years), of both genders. The quality of the studies was assessed using the Newcastle-Ottawa Scale instrument. The PRISMA standards were adopted for the conduct of this review, whose protocol is registered in PROSPERO, number CRD42018105248.


The search resulted in 1,770 articles; however, a total of 5 articles were included in this review, whose designs were transversal. Quality scores ranged from 8 to 9 points. The association between depression, anthropometric parameters, and body image was found in all included studies, regardless of the different statistical methods employed. Women perceived their body larger than it really was by idealizing a lean body, whereas in men the perception of being underweight or dissatisfaction was observed by idealizing a larger body, both conditions were associated with the presence of depression or depressive symptoms and body mass index in the same time.


Depression, anthropometric parameters and body image were associated. It is necessary to conduct other studies, especially longitudinal studies to elucidate the relationship among depression, weight, body image, and other associated factors.

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