Lifestyle factors and adolescent depressive symptomatology: associations and effect sizes of diet, physical activity and sedentary behaviour

Hayward, Joshua, Jacka, Felice N., Skouteris, Helen, Millar, Lynne, Strugnell, Claudia, Swinburn, Boyd A. and Allender, Steven 2016, Lifestyle factors and adolescent depressive symptomatology: associations and effect sizes of diet, physical activity and sedentary behaviour, Australian and New Zealand journal of psychiatry, vol. 50, no. 11, pp. 1064-1073, doi: 10.1177/0004867416671596.

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Title Lifestyle factors and adolescent depressive symptomatology: associations and effect sizes of diet, physical activity and sedentary behaviour
Author(s) Hayward, JoshuaORCID iD for Hayward, Joshua
Jacka, Felice N.ORCID iD for Jacka, Felice N.
Skouteris, Helen
Millar, Lynne
Strugnell, ClaudiaORCID iD for Strugnell, Claudia
Swinburn, Boyd A.
Allender, StevenORCID iD for Allender, Steven
Journal name Australian and New Zealand journal of psychiatry
Volume number 50
Issue number 11
Start page 1064
End page 1073
Total pages 10
Publisher Sage
Place of publication London, Eng.
Publication date 2016-11
ISSN 1440-1614
Keyword(s) Depressive symptomatology
diet pattern
physical activity
screen time
Science & Technology
Life Sciences & Biomedicine
Summary OBJECTIVE: Depression affects many Australian adolescents. Research points to the potential of lifestyle improvement for the population-level prevention of mental disorders. However, most studies examine single relationships without considering the combined contribution of lifestyle factors to variance in depression. This study examined associations between adolescent diet, physical activity and screen time behaviours and depressive symptomatology.

METHODS: A cross-sectional sample of year 8 and 10 students was recruited from 23 participating schools in 18 Victorian communities. Students were recruited using opt-out consent, resulting in 3295 participants from 4680 registered school enrolments (Participation Rate: 70.4%). Participants completed a supervised self-report questionnaire comprising Moods and Feelings Questionnaire-Short Form, an assessment of physical activity and sedentary behaviours during and outside school, and weekly food intake. Surveyed covariates included hours of sleep per night, age, socio-economic status and measured anthropometry. A hierarchical regression stratified by gender was conducted, with dichotomised Moods and Feelings Questionnaire-Short Form score as the outcome, and screen time, physical activity and dietary patterns as predictors. Nested regression analyses were then conducted to ascertain the variance in Moods and Feelings Questionnaire-Short Form score attributable to each significant predictor from the initial regression.

RESULTS: Increased scores on an unhealthy dietary pattern (odds ratio = 1.18; 95% confidence interval = [1.07, 1.32]) and physical activity guideline attainment (0.91; [0.85, 0.97]) were associated with depressive symptomatology in males, while screen time guideline attainment (0.95; [0.91, 0.98]) was associated with depression in females. No association was observed between healthy diet pattern and Moods and Feelings Questionnaire-Short Form. Overall, effect sizes were generally small, and the regression model accounted for 5.22% of Moods and Feelings Questionnaire-Short Form variance.

CONCLUSION: Gender-specific associations were observed between physical activity and both sedentary and dietary behaviours and depressive symptomatology among adolescents, although reverse causality cannot be refuted at this stage. Lifestyle behaviours may represent a modifiable target for the prevention of depressive symptomatology in adolescents.
Language eng
DOI 10.1177/0004867416671596
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920401 Behaviour and Health
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
ERA Research output type C Journal article
Copyright notice ©2016, The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists
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Document type: Journal Article
Collections: Faculty of Health
School of Psychology
Population Health
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