Original Article: The relationship between body mass index and depression, anxiety, body image, and eating attitudes in adolescents in Iran


1 Department of Pediatric, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences. Metabolic Liver Disease Research Center, Isfahan University of Medical reference to ideal or acceptable standards, Sciences, Isfahan, Iran

2 Department of Pediatric, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences

3 Modelling in Health Research Center, Shahrekord University of Medical Sciences

4 Department of Psychiatry, Clinical Research Development Unit, Hajar Hospital, Sahrekord University of Medical Sciences, Shahrekord


Background: The aim of this study was to investigate the relationship between body mass index (BMI) and depression, anxiety, body image, and eating attitudes in 12- to 16-year-old adolescents. Materials and Methods: In this descriptive-analytical study on 437 students in Shahrekord, Iran, selected by two-step random sampling (selection of schools and students), participants were divided into normal weight (BMI: 5–85th), overweight (BMI: 85–95th), and obese (BMI >95th) groups and completed the questionnaires and data were analyzed by SPSS version 23. Results: BMI had a positive correlation with anxiety, depression, and dysfunctional eating attitudes, and negative correlation with body image in adolescents. Mean scores of depression and anxiety in both overweight and obese groups were significantly higher than those in normal weight adolescents but scores of body image and eating attitudes were not different between overweight and normal weight groups. Conclusion: Obesity and overweight may have adverse effects on mental health of adolescents and more attention to psychological aspect of obesity can help us to provide better health services to overweight and obese adolescents.


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