DSW Candidate – Carissa Sietsema, LICSW/ LCSW, 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM


Virtual Showcase of DSW Scholars 2024 Event!

Improving Mental Health Outcomes in Rural Appalachia Using Nutritional Psychiatry Informed Practices

DSW Candidate – Carissa Sietsema, LICSW/ LCSW

Tuesday, April 23, 2024

2:30 PM – 3:45 PM Eastern Time Zone

Credit Hours: 1.0

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Improving Mental Health Outcomes in Rural Appalachia Using Nutritional Psychiatry Informed Practices

Rural communities, especially those located in rural Appalachia, have high rates of both physical and mental health issues. Nutritional psychiatry offers insight on the role nutrition plays in mental health symptoms and their severity. This capstone presentation utilizes a tripartite approach towards bridging the gap between nutritional recommendations identified in nutritional psychiatry and its use as a realistic and accessible intervention.

This presentation will focus on providing an overview of the capstone project, nutritional psychiatry, and factors unique to rural Appalachia. The interconnectedness between all three products will be explored in relation to the learning objectives. The presentation will first delve into the research process utilized in the systematic literature review and the findings on the effectiveness of interventions which are informed by nutritional psychiatry.

The way in which the conceptual paper conceptualizes a new understanding of factors driving dietary patterns will be explored next. Finally, the findings outlined in the practice application paper and the implications for using nutritional psychiatry in practice will be presented.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Participants will be able to describe the bidirectional flow between the gut microbiome and the brain, which influences mental health outcomes and severity.
  2. Participants will be able to identify factors that increase treatment engagement and outcomes when using interventions informed by nutritional psychiatry.
  3. Participants will be able articulate the influence external and internal factors have on diet and an individual’s ability to create sustainable dietary change that aligns nutritional psychiatry.

Delivery Method: Live Interactive Training via Zoom Video Conferencing

Credit Hours: 1.0 (ACE)

Target Audience: This conference is intended for social workers and students.


Accreditation: University of Kentucky College of Social Work, Provider # 1377, is approved as an ACE provider to offer social work continuing education by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Approved Continuing Education (ACE) program. Regulatory boards are the final authority on courses accepted for continuing education credit. ACE provider approval period: 9/29/22-9/29/25. Social workers participating in this conference will receive up to 15 general continuing education credits.

Claiming CE Credit: Instructions for claiming CE credit will be disseminated at the beginning of each session.

Questions: If you have any questions regarding CE credit or to report a grievance, please contact Melissa Whitaker at melissa.whitaker@uky.edu. For technical assistance, please contact lmshelp@uky.edu.