Depression and anxiety symptoms in relation to anthropometry and metabolism in men

Psychiatry Res. 2002 Oct 10;112(2):101-10. doi: 10.1016/s0165-1781(02)00192-0.


Depression is associated with an increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes mellitus. Abdominal obesity is also a high risk factor for these diseases. Therefore, symptoms of depression and anxiety were examined in relation to abdominal obesity. A total of 59 middle-aged men volunteered for measurements with the Hamilton Depression Scale (HDS), the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale (MADRS), the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Hamilton Anxiety Scale (HAS). These results were examined in relation to body mass index (BMI), waist/hip ratio (WHR) and sagittal abdominal diameter, a measurement of intra-abdominal fat mass, and metabolic variables. Men with WHR>1.0 (n=26) in comparison with men with normal WHR (<1.0, n=33) showed significantly higher sum scores in all the scales used. There were positive correlations between the sum scores of all the depression scales and the WHR or the sagittal abdominal diameter. BMI correlated comparatively weakly only with the HDS. The correlations with the WHR remained when the influence of BMI was eliminated, suggesting that obesity is less involved than centralization of body fat. Insulin and glucose were significantly related to the HDS. Morning cortisol levels were negatively related to the BDI and (borderline) to the MADRS, suggesting perturbations of the regulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis. We conclude that men with abdominal obesity have symptoms of depression and anxiety.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anthropometry*
  • Anxiety / diagnosis
  • Anxiety / etiology*
  • Anxiety / physiopathology
  • Anxiety / psychology
  • Body Constitution
  • Body Mass Index
  • Depression / diagnosis
  • Depression / etiology*
  • Depression / physiopathology
  • Depression / psychology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / physiopathology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 2 / psychology
  • Energy Metabolism / physiology*
  • Glucose Tolerance Test
  • Humans
  • Hydrocortisone / blood
  • Hypothalamo-Hypophyseal System / physiopathology
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Obesity / physiopathology
  • Obesity / psychology*
  • Personality Inventory
  • Pituitary-Adrenal System / physiopathology
  • Risk Factors
  • Somatoform Disorders / diagnosis
  • Somatoform Disorders / etiology
  • Somatoform Disorders / physiopathology
  • Somatoform Disorders / psychology


  • Hydrocortisone