A new study published by Univ. of Maryland researchers in the American Journal of Public Health finds that the housing crisis — especially foreclosures and mortgage delinquencies — is having significant effects on people’s health.
Depression (the clinical kind) was the obvious major effect, but it’s hardly the only one. Financial insecurity leads some people to make poor trade-offs when it comes to diet and medication, and depression not only reduces the body’s immune system, it often leads to unhealthy behavior — notably poor eating.
Among participants who were mortgage delinquent, 22 percent developed elevated depressive symptoms over the two-year period compared to only three percent of non-delinquent respondents. Twenty-eight percent of mortgage-delinquent participants reported food insecurity compared to four percent in the non-delinquent group.