Depression and Weight Gain

Drew Ramsey, MD


August 26, 2019

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that 43% of adults who have major depressive disorder (MDD) are obese. The data also indicate that adults with depression are more likely to be obese than are adults without depression.

Both obesity and depression are serious public health problems, yet the relationship between them remains unclear. Clinical depression has been associated with increased appetite and decreased physical activity, and is known to trigger neurobiological changes and contribute to increases in body mass index. In addition, research has shown that the stigmatization of obesity leads to psychological distress and is implicated in the pathophysiology of depression. Weight gain can also be a side effect of antidepressant therapy.

In this ReCAP, Drew Ramsey, MD, from Columbia University in New York City, discusses the importance of weight management in the treatment of MDDs. He reviews the current literature on the relationship between diet and depression, as well as collaborative intervention strategies used to manage weight gain in patients on antidepressant therapy.


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