Depression Increases Type 2 Diabetes Risk in Black Women

HealthDay News — Depressive symptoms and antidepressant use are associated with incident type 2 diabetes in black women, according to a study published in Diabetes Care.

Varsha G. Vimalananda, MD, MPH, from the Boston University School of Medicine, and colleagues examined the correlation between depressive symptoms and antidepressant use with incident type 2 diabetes using data from 35,898 women from the Black Women’s Health Study.

Participants completed the Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D) in 1999 and were followed through 2011. The researchers identified 3,372 incident diabetes cases over 12 years of follow-up.

Compared with a CES-D score of <16, The incidence rate ratios of diabetes increased with CES-D scores, the researchers found. Compared to patients with  CES-D score <16, the incidence rates in a basic multivariate model that included age, time period, family history of diabetes, and education were as follows:

  • CES-D score 16-22: 1.23 (95% CI: 1.12 to 1.35)
  • CES-D score 23-32: 1.26 (95% CI: 1.12 to 1.41)
  • CES-D score ≥33: 1.45 (95% CI: 1.24 to 1.69)

The incidence rate ratios were attenuated to 1.11 (95% CI: 1.01 to 1.22), 1.08 (95% CI: 0.96 to 1.22), and 1.22 (95% CI: 1.04 to 1.43), after multiple adjustment for lifestyle factors and body mass index (BMI).

For antidepressant use, the adjusted incidence rate ratio was 1.26 (95% CI: 1.11 to 1.43). Similar results were obtained for obese women.

“Both depressive symptoms and antidepressant use are associated with incident diabetes among African-American women,” the researchers wrote. “These associations are mediated in part, but not entirely, through lifestyle factors and BMI.”


  1. Vimalananda, VG, et al. Diabetes Care. doi: 10.2337/dc13-2642