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18.02.2019 | original article | Ausgabe 2/2019

neuropsychiatrie 2/2019

Obesity and anxiety symptoms: a systematic review and meta-analysis

neuropsychiatrie > Ausgabe 2/2019
Sohrab Amiri, Sepideh Behnezhad
Wichtige Hinweise

Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s40211-019-0302-9) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

Author contributions

S. Amiri contributed to the formation of the subject, collecting and extracting data, analyzing data and writing a draft. S. Behnezhad contributed to collecting and extracting data and suggested some changes.

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Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.



Obesity and anxiety are the two most common health problems and increased body mass index can be lead to anxiety.


The aim of this meta-analysis was to investigate the frequency of anxiety symptoms in people who are obese/overweight.


For this purpose the authors systematically searched keywords in the databases PubMed, Scopus, PsycINFO and Google scholar through August 2018. After a comprehensive review, 25 studies were included into the meta-analysis.


Results of the meta-analysis showed that the frequency of anxiety in obesity had a pooled odds ratio (OR) of 1.30 and a 95% confidence interval (CI) of 1.20–1.41 and in overweight had an OR of 1.10 and CI of 1.00–1.21. Comparison between obesity/overweight and normal weight showed high frequency of anxiety in obesity/overweight with respect to subgroups (sex, obesity and anxiety assessment, adjusted/unadjusted, anxiety duration and age). Evaluation of 25 studies included in the meta-analysis showed publication bias.


Overall, findings indicate anxiety occurs more frequently in obese/overweight people compared with normal weight people.

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