Journal List > J Nutr Health > v.47(1) > 1081371

J Nutr Health. 2014 Feb;47(1):67-76. Korean.
Published online February 28, 2014.
© 2014 The Korean Nutrition Society
A study on dietary habits and food intakes in adults aged 50 or older according to depression status
Seungjae Lee, Yuri Kim, Sunhee Seo and Mi Sook Cho
Department of Nutritional Science and Food Management, Ewha Womans University, Seoul 120-750, Korea.

To whom correspondence should be addressed. tel: +82-2-3277-2826, Email:
Received September 30, 2013; Revised October 23, 2013; Accepted December 30, 2013.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.



This study was conducted in order to analyze the dietary habits and food intake status according to the prevalence of depression in adults.


A total of 496 subjects, 224 men and 272 women aged 50 to 100 years were recruited from more than 13 cities in Korea. The questionnaires consisted of general characteristics, dietary life status, food intakes, the mean mini dietary assessment and satisfaction with food-related life questionnaire of the subjects to ask according to the degree of depression. Depression status was evaluated according to the Korean form of the Geriatric Depression Scale (K-GDS).


All subjects were divided into depression or normal groups; the prevalence of depression was 13.8% (male) and 23.9% (female). People aged 65 or older were more likely to have higher prevalence of depression and to be bereaved. People in the depression group had poor appetite, almost never dined-out, and ate alone. The food intake of miscellaneous cereals, beans, tofu, chicken/duck meat, cabbage, carrot/amber, fungi, apple, pear, strawberry, grapes, and banana was significantly higher in the normal group compared with the depression group. In particular, significantly higher intake of vegetables and fruits was observed in the normal group. In addition, subjects in the depression group ate more fatty meat and were more dissatisfied with food-related life than those in the normal group.


The results of this study imply that the prevalence of depression may affect the dietary habits, food intake, and dietary behaviors in the older adult population.

Keywords: adult; depression; dietary habit; food intake; dietary behavior


Table 1
General Characteristics of Subjects according to depression degree n (%)
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Table 2
Dietary behaviors of the subjects according to depression degree n (%)
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Table 3
The intakes of each food items among the subjects according to depression degree
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Table 4
The mean mini dietary assessment index score of the subjects according to depression degree
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Table 5
Satisfaction with food-related life of the subjects according to depression degree
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This work was supported by the Ewha Global Top5 Grant 2012 of Ewha Womans University.

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