BACKGROUND: Close relations have been observed between obesity and eating habits, which is affected by personality traits, however, only few studies are available and little is known concerning this topic. METHODS: This study group consisted of 141 Korean participants with body mass index of at least 27 kg/m2 and an age range of 18~50 years. Eating habits were measured by the Dutch Eating Behavior Questionnaire and personality traits were assessed using NEO-Abstract Self-report form. Multivariate regression analyses were performed to study the relationship between personality traits and eating habits. RESULTS: A higher BMI was associated with a higher level of extraversion and a lower level of openness. Emotional eating was positively associated with neuroticism in both men and women. Restrained eating was significantly associated with neuroticism in men. In contrast openness and conscientiousness was associated with neuroticism in women. After adjusting for age, sex, body mass index, and other subscales of personality traits, association between restrained eating and conscientiousness remained robust. CONCLUSIONS: In obese Korean adults, those who scored higher on conscientiousness of personality traits showed a tendency of restrained eating habit.