Association between Psychological Disorders, Mediterranean Diet, and Chronotype in a Group of Italian Adults

Monica Dinu*, Sofia Lotti*, Antonia Napoletano, Abigail Corrao, Giuditta Pagliai, Marta Tristan Asensi, Vincenza Gianfredi, Daniele Nucci, Barbara Colombini, Francesco Sofi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Mental health conditions are a significant contributor to the global burden of disease. The aim of this study was to explore the association between psychological disorders, Mediterranean diet (MD), and chronotype. A total of 344 participants (74% women) with a mean age of 33.5 ± 13 years were recruited. According to the Depression Anxiety Stress Scale (DASS-21) score, 22% of participants had symptoms of depression, 23% anxiety, and 10% stress. The assessment of MD adherence through the Medi-Lite score revealed that participants with psychological disorders had significantly (p < 0.05) lower MD adherence than those without these conditions. Furthermore, less than 10% of the subjects with at least one symptom reported consuming the optimal amount of fruit and vegetables, while 72% showed excessive consumption of meat and meat products. Regarding chronotype, evening subjects reported the lowest MD adherence and the highest prevalence of all three psychological disorders analyzed. A multivariate analysis showed that female gender, age, being unmarried/single, sedentary lifestyle, and low MD adherence were associated with a significantly higher risk of depression, anxiety, and stress. Future studies are needed to explore the relationship between mental health and risk factors to improve personal and global population health.

Original languageEnglish
Article number335
Number of pages11
JournalInternational Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 26 Dec 2022


  • Humans
  • Adult
  • Female
  • Young Adult
  • Middle Aged
  • Male
  • Diet, Mediterranean
  • Chronotype
  • Fruit
  • Vegetables
  • Anxiety Disorders


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