Depression, nutritional risk and eating behaviour in older caregivers

Torres, S. J., McCabe, M. and Nowson, C. A. 2010, Depression, nutritional risk and eating behaviour in older caregivers, Journal of nutrition, health and aging, vol. 14, no. 6, pp. 442-448, doi: 10.1007/s12603-010-0041-x.

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Title Depression, nutritional risk and eating behaviour in older caregivers
Author(s) Torres, S. J.ORCID iD for Torres, S. J.
McCabe, M.
Nowson, C. A.ORCID iD for Nowson, C. A.
Journal name Journal of nutrition, health and aging
Volume number 14
Issue number 6
Start page 442
End page 448
Total pages 7
Publisher Springer
Place of publication New York, N. Y.
Publication date 2010-06
ISSN 1279-7707
Keyword(s) caregiver
dietary intake
Summary Objective
This study investigated the relationship between depression, nutritional risk and dietary intake in a population of older caregivers.

Mailed questionnaire with sub group participating in a home-based interview.

Participants and setting
Seventy-six community dwelling caregivers aged 50 y or over from Victoria, Australia.


Questionnaires provided information on weight, height, hours of care, depressive symptoms, nutritional risk and appetite. The home-based interview assessed dietary intake and shopping, cooking and meal consumption habits.


The sample had a mean±SD age of 70.3±12.8 y, BMI of 27.2±4.8 kg/m2 and the time spent caring was 101.8±68.1 h/wk. Overall, 32% of caregivers had depressive symptoms, 21% were at risk of malnutrition and 21% reported their appetite was fair/bad/very bad. Caregivers with depressive symptoms (32%) compared to those with no depressive symptoms (53%) had a poorer appetite (p<0.05). Of the 20 caregivers who participated in the home interview, 25% reported they ate their meals alone.


A significant proportion of community dwelling older caregivers had depressive symptoms, were at risk of malnutrition and had poor appetites, although the majority were overweight or obese.
Language eng
DOI 10.1007/s12603-010-0041-x
Field of Research 111199 Nutrition and Dietetics not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2010, Springer
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Created: Mon, 28 Jun 2010, 13:48:14 EST by Jane Moschetti

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