Degree Date


Document Type

Dissertation - Public Access

Degree Name

Psy.D. Doctor of Clinical Psychology

Academic Discipline

Clinical Psychology

First Advisor

Dr. Kristen Carney-Newberry Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Dr. William Filstead Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Dr. Gregory Sarlo Ph.D.


Dieting, or the act of restricting oneself to small amounts or particular kinds of foods on the basis of health, spirituality, lifestyle, and moral decisions, is a practice that dates to 1066 A.D. However, with social media being as influential as it is, one might believe dieting is a new obsession or at least an obsession to which popular culture is returning. Despite this, it is only in recent years that researchers have begun to focus on the health benefits of such behaviors. The present study was designed to take this focus a step further by exploring the potential risks and benefits of dieting on mental health. A self-report survey that contained a food frequency questionnaire and the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory–2 Depression scale was used to assess participants’ dietary style over a year and their depressive symptoms. A total of 28 completed questionnaires (14 men and 14 women) were received for analysis. The multivariate linear regression that was intended could not be undertaken due to sample limitations. It was anticipated that large samples would be gathered across the three dietary styles. Due to COVID-19 and given the inability to acquire an adequate sample size, valid analysis was precluded, and the researcher was unable to conduct the study as anticipated. Thus, the reported findings are not significant. Suggestions for addressing the limitations of this study are offered for future research.