The aim of this study was to determine the cross-sectional associations between frequency of eating with others and depressive symptoms in Japanese employees while accounting for lifestyle and dietary factors. We also examined the relationship with stratification by living arrangement. Participants were 1876 workers aged 18-74 years who participated in a health survey at a periodic checkup. Depressive symptoms were assessed using the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression scale. Frequency of eating with others was categorized into ranges between daily and <1 day/week. Associations between frequency of eating with others and depressive symptoms were assessed using logistic regression analysis, with adjustment for lifestyle and dietary factors. The prevalence of depressive symptoms was 32.9%. The prevalence of depressive symptoms tended to increase with decreasing frequency of eating with others, with multivariate-adjusted odds ratios (95% conﬁdence intervals) for the highest through lowest frequency groups of eating meals with others being 1.00 (reference), 1.27 (0.92-1.74), 1.56 (1.11-2.21), 1.86 (1.29-2.67), and 2.22 (1.53-3.22), respectively (P for trend<0.001). In analysis stratified by living arrangement, a significant association was found with those living with others but not those living alone (P for interaction <0.001). Lower frequency of eating with others may be associated with higher odds of depressive symptoms among Japanese workers living with others, even after controlling for lifestyle and dietary factors.
Keywords: Depressive symptoms; Eating alone; Epidemiology; Japanese.
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