Mental health and obesity are major contributors to the increasing prevalence of mental illness and chronic disease in the US, according to a report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
According to the study, obesity-related mental health problems are “a significant contributor to chronic disease.”
Read more: The report found that mental health is a “significant predictor of mortality and morbidity” for adults.
“In contrast, mental health outcomes are not significantly influenced by obesity status,” the report states.
The study’s authors point out that obesity is a significant risk factor for mental illness, which is linked to the onset of depression, anxiety, and other mental health disorders.
It’s important to note that the study only looked at mental health and not physical health, since the study was conducted using data collected through the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions.
The report also notes that “mental health is not the only predictor of morbidity or mortality” for people with mental health issues.
However, according the CDC, the prevalence of depression among adults aged 18 to 64 increased by more than 40 percent between 2007 and 2015, while the rate of obesity increased by nearly 25 percent.
As for mental health concerns, “mental illness and obesity may be interrelated,” the CDC says.
One of the study’s researchers, James H. McConkie, MD, PhD, MPH, a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, told the BBC that the link between obesity and mental health has been well-established.
McConkie added that a lot of research has been done on obesity and depression and that there is a link between the two.
“If you are in a relationship, you may have depression or anxiety, but they are often linked to one another,” he said.
“They are not related to one’s weight.”
The CDC also points out that there are a lot more people in the United States with mental illness than there are people with physical health conditions.
According to the CDC’s website, about 20 million people in this country have mental illness.