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Weight Status and Depression in Italy: Evidence from the Second Wave of the European Health Interview Survey

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  • Adriana Barone
  • Cristian Barra

Abstract

This study tests the association between weight status and depression in Italy using the Second Wave of the European Health Interview Survey (EHIS2) microdata, which also provide information on weight/height and eight depressive symptoms. Using a probit regression, the empirical results show a strong positive association between weight status, proxied by body mass index, and sleep troubles and eating disorders, with females suffering more than males. In addition, low interest is negatively associated with medium and high sources of income, while depressive mood and sense of failure are negatively associated with employment status. Individuals in midlife (45–54 years old) suffer from all depressive symptoms more than those in other age classes, with females suffering more than males, with the exception of low interest and depressive mood. Furthermore, individuals with a higher level of education have a lower likelihood of suffering from all depressive symptoms. These findings suggest that policies aimed at reducing obesity rates could also reduce new and emerging types of depressive symptoms correlated with overweight/obesity, such as sleep troubles and eating disturbances. JEL: J24, I12, I1, C25

Suggested Citation

  • Adriana Barone & Cristian Barra, 2022. "Weight Status and Depression in Italy: Evidence from the Second Wave of the European Health Interview Survey," Journal of Interdisciplinary Economics, , vol. 34(2), pages 193-227, July.
  • Handle: RePEc:sae:jinter:v:34:y:2022:i:2:p:193-227
    DOI: 10.1177/02601079211032110
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    More about this item

    Keywords

    Weight status; depression; sleep troubles; eating disturbances; microeconometrics;
    All these keywords.

    JEL classification:

    • J24 - Labor and Demographic Economics - - Demand and Supply of Labor - - - Human Capital; Skills; Occupational Choice; Labor Productivity
    • I12 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Health Behavior
    • I1 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health
    • C25 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Single Equation Models; Single Variables - - - Discrete Regression and Qualitative Choice Models; Discrete Regressors; Proportions; Probabilities

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