Abstract P295: The Association of Chronic Stress with Obesity among Hispanic/Latino Adults. Results from the Hispanic Community Health Study/Study of Latinos (HCHS/SOL)
Objectives: Prior studies suggest that high stress levels are associated with obesity. However, few studies distinguish between type, duration or timing of stressful exposures. In this study, we examined the association of chronic and recent stress with excess weight in a diverse sample of Latino adults.
Methods:HCHS/SOL is a multicenter cohort study of Latino adults (ages 18-74 years) from 4 US cities (Bronx, Chicago, Miami and San Diego).The Sociocultural Ancillary Study (2009-2011) is a sample of 5,253 participants (61% female) from HCHS/SOL. Overweight was defined as BMI 25-29.9 and Obese as BMI ≥30. Three indicators of stress were studied: chronic stress lasting for at least 6 months (Chronic Burden Scale), lifetime exposure to stressors (Traumatic Stress Schedule), and perceived stress during the last month (past month, Cohen’s Perceived Stress Scale). Odds ratios (OR) were calculated using multinomial regression models to describe the odds of obesity or overweight relative to normal weight; models were adjusted for study sampling design and potential confounders.
Results: 37% of participants were overweight and 41% obese. Mean (standard error) scores of chronic stress, traumatic stress and perceived stress were 1.8 (0.04), 2.1 (.04), and 14.9 (0.16), respectively. After adjustment for confounders, the odds of obesity increased with number of chronic stress events. A higher number of traumatic events were associated with overweight but the association was not longer significant after adjustment for confounders (Table). No association between perceived stress with overweight or obesity was observed.
Conclusions: Exposure to chronic stressors lasting ≥6 months is more relevant for obesity prevalence than recent exposure (past month) in Hispanics. As high stress and obesity are important problems among Hispanics, stress management techniques may need to be incorporated in obesity prevention and treatment programs for this population.
- © 2013 by American Heart Association, Inc.