The purpose of this study is to assess the independent effects of depression and excess body weight (EBW) on cognition and functioning in a community sample of young adults.
This was a cross-sectional of 943 young adults. The diagnosis of a current depressive episode was performed using the Mini International Neuropsychiatric Interview (MINI). Cognition and functioning were assessed using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) and the Functional Assessment Short Test (FAST), respectively. The EBW was defined as BMI ≥ 25.0 kg/m. The independent main effects of depression and EBW, as well as the analysis interaction were performed using two-way analysis of covariance (ANCOVA).
The total sample comprised 943 adults, with 75 (8.0%) individuals diagnosed with a current depressive episode and 493 (52,6%) with EBW. Of the 75 subjects with depression, 40 were identified with EBW comorbidity. Subjects with depression and EBW comorbidity reported greater cognitive and functional impairment, as compared to individuals with depression without EBW. There was a significant interaction between depression and EBW on MoCA total (p<0.001) as well as FAST total (p=0.010), work (p=0.002), cognition (p=0.023), finances (p=0.032) and relationships domains (p=0.008).
The adverse effects of depression and EBW are independent and cumulative with respect to cognition and functioning of individuals. The understanding of the complex interactions between cognition, functioning, EBW and depression are important for development of preventive and therapeutic strategies.

Copyright © 2020. Published by Elsevier B.V.