Date of Conferral







Jay Greiner


Research on obesity, weight loss, and food addiction (FA) suggested a strong relationship between use of food additives and the brain's addictive response to food. Previous researchers have examined (FA) and have identified certain food additives such as monosodium glutamate (MSG) and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) as contributors to food addiction and overeating. Social cognitive theory (SCT) has also been effective in addressing addictive behaviors such as drug addiction, alcohol addiction, and smoking cessation (Bricker et al., 2010). However, researchers had not examined food addiction, social cognitive theory, and obesity in the same study. The purpose of this quantitative, quasi-experimental study was to compare the effects of SCT-based health information and non-SCT-based health information on FA among obese and overweight women. The Yale Food Addiction Scale (YFAS) was used to measure changes in FA and food addiction symptoms among 84 obese and overweight women who received SCT-based health information and non-SCT-based health information. Total scores from pretests and posttests were analyzed using analysis of covariance. Between-group differences on the symptom count posttest scores of the YFAS were analyzed using analysis of variance. Scores were used to determine the difference in FA and FA symptoms between nonrandomized groups. Although the results were not statistically significant, almost 60% (n = 50) of participants experienced a favorable decrease in FA symptoms and experienced weight loss. Findings may provide a basis for determining additional options for health professionals to address obesity and FA patterns.