Date of Award

Summer 8-24-2021

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Integrative Biology (MSIB)



Major Professor

Dr. Evelina Sterling

First Committee Member

Dr. Lisa Ganser

Second Committee Member

Dr. Phaedra Corso

Third Committee Member

Dr. Thomas McElroy


Many studies have examined the effects of racial and socioeconomic differences on health-related disparities involving obesity but, few have examined the mental and physical well-being intersection. Obesity is a disease that affects many Americans and has become an epidemic affecting the American population. Obesity, especially morbid obesity, is a risk factor for many other obesity-related diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, hypertension, and more. Using the 2018 Healthcare Avoidance Study, differences were found between two racial groups, Caucasian and African-American women. Race was found as a significant factor for both level of physical activity and ideal body image perception