Does obesity cause depression?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-02-2008
Does obesity cause depression?
Mon, 05-27-2013 - 9:59am

Does obesity cause depression or does depression cause obesity? I am more than 100 lbs overweight and struggling with weight loss. I have had so many people tell me that I should talk to my doctor about depression to help. I have self-esteem issues and feel down at times but not sure if that is depression. Any thoughts?

Avatar for sunset5000
Community Leader
Registered: 10-10-2007
Sat, 06-01-2013 - 3:00am

Welcome to the board! You asked a great question. I think obesity and depression may bounch back and forth off each other.

If you do a topic seach, you should be able to find the thread I posted before, Criteria for Depression. I am on my cell phone and cannot locate the article tonight, but can try on the computer tomorrow. Let me know if you find. Criteria for Depression and if you have any questions, I would be glad to try too answer them, even though I am no doctor.

Good luck, hope to hear more from you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 05-04-2011
Mon, 06-03-2013 - 4:21pm

Welcometo the board!  I agree with Heidi that obesity and depression probably play off each other.  Obesity can lead to low self-esteem, and that can trigger depression in someone who is prone to it, which can cause that person to have low energy and/or eat too much, which causes weight gain, which exacerbates the depression, and so on.  I hope that Heidi's link helps.  If you can't find it, certainly you can Google it and find plenty of sites with the criteria; just don't take the internet as Gospel truth.  ;)

Community Leader
Registered: 10-01-2010
Wed, 06-05-2013 - 3:39pm

I had a doctor tell me that if you are not on meds, you are not depressed.  Surprised

I recently lost almost 60 lbs - and I know I felt down because it seemed like everyone ate so much more than me and they were skinny, I was overweight. I have never been a big eater.

I felt down because doctors kept telling me that no matter what medical problem I had, it was because "I was fat". Made me not want to see the doctor any more, since they didn't help anyhow, just told me to lose weight.

I felt down when I looked in the mirror. I didn't like what I saw, but didn't know how to change it - diets just didn't work for me.

So I can see there is a connection - but I guess it depends on what you mean by depressed.