Mary Beth Spitznagel

Mary Beth Spitznagel

Department of Psychology
Office Location:
Room 325 Kent Hall
Contact Information


Research Areas:

Does Dr. Spitznagel plan to recruit a doctoral student for the next incoming class?



Research Interests:

Clinical neuropsychology, caregiver burden, and the cognitive impact of obesity, diet, and exercise.

Lab Site:

Clinical Neuropsychology Research Lab

Courses Frequently Taught:

  • Introduction to Psychological Assessment (graduate)
  • Advanced Psychological Assessment (graduate)
  • Clinical Neuroanatomy (graduate/undergraduate)
  • Neuropsychological Assessment (graduate)
  • Neuropsychology Practicum (graduate)
  • Psychology of Exercise (undergraduate)


Caregiver Burden 

  • Martin JT, Chapman KR, Was C, Spitznagel MB. (2021). Factors of dementia caregiver burden differentially contribute to desire to institutionalize. Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry and Neurology. doi: 10.1177/08919887211036183
  • Spitznagel MB, Updegraff ASG, Twohig MP, Carlson MD, Fulkerson CM. (2021). Reducing occupational distress in veterinary medicine personnel with acceptance and commitment training: A pilot study. New Zealand Veterinary Journal. doi: 10.1080/00480169.2021.1938270
  • Patrick K, Martin J, Chapman K, Anderson J, Spitznagel MB. (2021). The moderating role of pain self-efficacy in the relationships among caregiver burden and care recipient pain and neuropsychiatric symptoms in a sample of persons with dementia. Alzheimer Disease and Associated Disorders, doi: 10.1097/WAD.0000000000000451
  • Spitznagel MB, Anderson JR, Marchitelli B, Bibbo J, Sislak M, Carlson MD. (2021). Owner quality of life, caregiver burden, and anticipatory grief:  How they differ and why it matters. Veterinary Record. doi/10.1002/vetr.74.
  • Spitznagel MB, Mueller MK, Fraychak T, Hoffman AM, Carlson MD. (2019). Validation of an abbreviated instrument to assess veterinary client caregiver burden. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine, doi.10.1111/jvim.15508
  • Spitznagel MB, Ben-Porath YS, Rishniw M, Kogan L, Carlson MD. (2019). Development and validation of a Burden Transfer Inventory measure for predicting veterinarian stress related to client behavior. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 254, 124-132.
  • Spitznagel MB, Cox MD, Jacobson DM, Albers AL, Carlson MD. (2019). Assessment of caregiver burden and associations with psychosocial function, veterinary service use, and factors related to treatment plan adherence among owners of dogs and cats. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association, 254, 133-144.
  • Spitznagel MB, Jacobson DM, Cox MD, Carlson MD (2018). Predicting caregiver burden in general veterinary clients: Contribution of companion animal clinical signs and behavior problems. The Veterinary Journal, 236; 23-30.
  • Spitznagel MB, Jacobson DM, Cox MD, Carlson MD (2017). Caregiver burden in owners of a sick companion animal: A cross-sectional observational study. Veterinary Record. doi: 10.1136/vr.104295

The Cognitive Impact of Obesity, Diet, and Exercise 

  • Anderson JR, Maki KC, Palacios OM, Edirisinghe I, Burton-Freeman B, Spitznagel MB. (2020). Varying roles of glucoregulatory function measures in postprandial cognition following milk consumption. European Journal of Nutrition, doi: 10.1007/s00394-020-02343-9.
  • Anderson JR, Gunstad J, Updegraff J, Sato A, Hagerdorn PL, Spitznagel MB. (2018). Biological sex and glucoregulation modulate postprandial cognition following dairy milk and fruit juice in healthy school-age children. Nutritional Neuroscience, 10:1-10. doi: 10.1080/1028415X.2018.1507963.
  • Anderson JR, Hawkins MAW, Updegraff J, Gunstad J, Spitznagel MB. (2017). Baseline glucoregulatory function moderates the effect of dairy milk and fruit juice on postprandial cognition in healthy young adults. European Journal of Nutrition, Jul 13 DOI 10.1007/s00394-017-1505-0
  • Spitznagel MB, Alosco ML, Inge T, Rochette A, Strain G, Devlin M, Crosby RD, Mitchell JE, Gunstad J. (2016). History of Obesity in Adolescence Affects Adult Cognition: Before and After Bariatric Surgery. Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases. Jan 29. Pii: S1550-7289(16)00028-9. Doi: 10.1016/j.soard.2016.01.023.
  • Galioto R, Spitznagel MB (2016). The effects of breakfast and breakfast composition on cognition in adults. Advances in Nutrition. May 16;7(3):576S-89S. Doi: 10.3945/an. 115.010231.
    Spitznagel MB, Gunstad J, Manderino L, Heinberg L. (2015). Liver biopsy predicts cognitive function following bariatric surgery. Obesity (Silver Spring); Oct;23(10):1957-9. Doi: 10.1002/oby.21219.
  • Hawkins M, Gunstad J, Calvo D, Spitznagel MB. (2016). Higher fasting glucose levels are associated with poorer cognition among otherwise healthy young adults with obesity. Health Psychology, Feb;35(2):199-202. Doi: 10.1037/hea0000248.


Ph.D., Ohio University (2003)


Neuropsychology, Obesity, Dementia, Ageing, Metabolism