Poor appetite and overeating reported by adults in Australia during the coronavirus-19 disease pandemic: a population-based study.
AuthorOwen, AJ; Tran, T; Hammarberg, K; Kirkman, M; Fisher, J; COVID-19 Restrictions Impact Research Group
Source TitlePublic Health Nutrition
PublisherCambridge University Press (CUP)
University of Melbourne Author/sTran, Thach
AffiliationMedicine and Radiology
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsOwen, A. J., Tran, T., Hammarberg, K., Kirkman, M., Fisher, J. & COVID-19 Restrictions Impact Research Group (2020). Poor appetite and overeating reported by adults in Australia during the coronavirus-19 disease pandemic: a population-based study.. Public Health Nutr, 24 (2), pp.1-7. https://doi.org/10.1017/S1368980020003833.
Access StatusOpen Access
Open Access at PMChttp://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7556905
OBJECTIVE: As a result of the coronavirus-19 disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Australia adopted emergency measures on 22 March 2020. This study reports the effect of the COVID-19 lockdown on appetite and overeating in Australian adults during the first month of emergency measures. DESIGN: This study reports analysis of data from the population-based, self-completed survey. The main outcome measure was an item from the Patient Health Questionnaire 9 asking: 'Over the past 2 weeks, how often have you been bothered by poor appetite or overeating?'. Data on sociodemographic factors, symptoms of anxiety and depression, and the impact of COVID-19 and lockdown were also collected. Multivariable logistic regression was used to examine associations with poor appetite or overeating. SETTING: An anonymous online survey available from 3 April to 2 May 2020. PARTICIPANTS: A total of 13 829 Australian residents aged 18 years or over. RESULTS: The weighted prevalence of being bothered by poor appetite or overeating in the past 2 weeks was 53·6 %, with 11·6 % (95 % CI 10·6, 12·6) of the cohort reporting poor appetite or overeating nearly every day. High levels of anxiety, concern about contracting COVID-19, being in lockdown with children and reporting a severe impact of the lockdown were associated with increased odds of poor appetite or overeating. CONCLUSIONS: Given the widespread prevalence of being bothered by poor appetite or overeating, universal public health interventions to address emotion-focused or situational eating during periods of lockdown may be appropriate.
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