Patients with depression or similar mood disorders may consider following a healthier diet, according to a study published in the American Journal of Public Health.
This is because research has found that individuals with depression commonly experience abdominal obesity, which can lead to higher risks of being diagnosed with cancer and cardiovascular disease.
In an effort to discover what connects the two health complications, researchers conducted a 15-year trial and discovered that participants with depression at the beginning of the study experienced faster weight gain compared to people without the disorder. However, participants who started off overweight and were diagnosed with depression did not see an increased weight gain rate.
These findings are “another reason to take depression seriously and not to think about it just in terms of mental health, but to also think about the physical consequences of mental health problems,” said Belinda Needham, an assistant professor of sociology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.
These results may benefit patients with depression, as researchers may be able to develop antidepressants that dont cause weight gain, as a recent study at NYUs School of Medicine confirmed that nearly 25 percent of people who take antidepressant experience weight gain as one of the side effects.