Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Counseling Psychology & Community Services


The purpose of this study was to examine whether N-3 fatty acids intake would correlate with a prevalence of mental distresses. The present study consisted of a comprehensive literature review and analysis of preexisting data that were relevant to this study. Two data were primarily used in the assessment. These were the 1994 study of Media and Markets by Simmons Market Research Bureau, Inc. for food intakes, and the report of the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) for the prevalence of Frequent Mental Distress. Due to incompatibility of those two studies additional data- the U.S. population estimates for regions and states by selected age and sex group: annual series, July 1, 1990 -was included in order to make the first two data comparable.

The data were independently analyzed for more sensitive analysis. From the descriptive results, the overall regional prevalence of Frequent Mental Distress was the lowest in the Midwest and highest in the West. The South region that exhibited the highest prevalence of mental distress showed the lowest in food intakes. The analysis of mental distress based on age-sex groups showed significant differences among regions except one age-sex group (Male aged 45 to 64 years). Thus, there were significant differences among regions in terms of the prevalence of mental distress, but I could not make a conclusion that the food consumptions might contribute to the regional differences in the prevalence of frequent mental distress because there were no correlation between them observed in this study.

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