Personality correlates of type 1 diabetes in a national representative sample


  • Iva Čukić Department of Psychology, School of Philosophy, University of Edinburgh Centre for Cognitive Ageing and Cognitive Epidemiology, University of Edinburgh
  • Alexander Weiss Department of Psychology, School of Philosophy, University of Edinburgh


personality traits, type 1 diabetes, neuroticism, openness, insulin


We examined cross-sectional relationships between personality traits and type 1 diabetes. The sample (n=8490) was taken from the 1982-84 wave of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey Epidemiological Follow-up Study. We fit three logistic regression models to test whether neuroticism, extraversion, openness, or the Type A behavior pattern were associated with type 1 diabetes. Model 1 included sex, age, race/ethnicity and all four personality traits. Model 2 added depressive symptoms. Model 3 added body mass index, hypertension, and cigarette smoking status. Results regarding personality traits were consistent across all three models: higher neuroticism was associated with 39% higher chance of having type 1 diabetes per standard deviation increase and openness was associated with 26% decrease in that chance per standard deviation increase. Extraversion, and Type A personality were not associated with type 1 diabetes in our models.