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Date of Award

7-15-2012

Degree Type

Thesis (On-Campus Access Only)

Degree Name

Master of Science in Clinical Psychology (MSCP)

Committee Chair

Shawn Davis, PhD

Abstract

Personality traits have been shown to influence an individual’s attitude towards their health and resulting health practices. Specifically, neuroticism has been found to be associated with detrimental health behaviors whereas agreeableness, conscientiousness, and extroversion have been associated with positive health behaviors, such as healthy eating. The present research is a recent investigation that expands upon previous research by including an individual’s self-evaluated body image along with health oriented beliefs and eating behaviors. Participants completed an online survey regarding their current health behaviors, evaluation of body image, and personality traits. Neuroticism was found to be positively associated with negative health behaviors, such as extreme dieting and being unhappy with one’s body. Conversely, neuroticism was negatively associated with health consciousness and number of healthy activities. Higher levels of agreeableness, conscientiousness, and extroversion were found to be associated with being happy with one’s weight and positive health behaviors, such as healthy eating and exercising.

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