Maria Somaraki

PhD student at Department of food studies, nutrition and dietetics

Visiting address:
Husargatan 3
752 37 Uppsala
Postal address:
Box 560
751 22 UPPSALA

Short presentation

PhD student in Food, Nutrition and Dietetics, M.Sc. in Medical Sciences (Public Health Epidemiology). B.Sc. in Nutrition and Dietetics

Some children enjoy food more than others. However, this may lead to weight problems early in life. My research is about how children with obesity eat and whether their habits can improve with intervention involving parents. Specifically, I will evaluate parental feeding practices and child eating habits after a randomised controlled trial for early obesity.

Keywords: feeding practices child eating behaviour early obesity treatment

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My courses


I am born on the Greek Island Crete where Mediterranean food has a special place in our hearts. I have studied to become a clinical dietitian in Greece. Since August 2016 I have been a PhD student at the Department of Food, Nutrition and Dietetics.


My research experience includes two research projects in the realm of obesity-related parent-child interactions. First, I investigated maternal feeding practices with regard to maternal migrant background based on data from three cohorts in Sweden (over 1,000 participants). Then, I set out to explore perceived child eating behaviours in a multicultural sample in Sweden. These studies have been published in peer-reviewed journals and the major findings have been presented at European conferences.

My next research project is part of the More and Less study, M&L. It is a randomised controlled trial that aims to evaluate the effectiveness of obesity treatment in children four to six years old at 1-year and 4-year postbaseline. The project focuses on evidence-based parenting practices and my objective is to identify the role of parental feeding practices and child eating behaviours in obesity treatment using longitudinal data and measurements at the different time points.

Thesis title: “Early obesity: Parental feeding, child eating behaviours and effects of interventions”

Supervisor: Paulina Nowicka, Associate Professor, Uppsala University

Co-supervisors: Anna Ek, Postdoctoral Fellow, Karolinska Institutet and Pernilla Sandvik, Postdoctoral Fellow, Uppsala University


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