Karina Lora, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Allied Health Sciences, Health Sciences Center, University of Oklahoma (Affiliate)

Research Overview

1. My research interests include the study of social determinants of health and its contribution to health disparities in the area of childhood obesity. I am particularly interested in parental feeding behaviors and their effects on child feeding practices, the contribution of household food insecurity, acculturation, and economic status on negative eating habits that could lead to excessive weight gain in minority mothers and children.

2. I just finished analyzing preliminary data on maternal feeding practices and their relationship with food security, ethnicity/race, and maternal and child weight in order to send two abstracts for the Experimental Biology 2011 meeting. I would like to advance further investigating the “complementary feeding practices” that low-income undeserved parents utilize that may contribute to excess gain in children early years.

3. For my doctoral dissertation I focused on the omega-3 fatty acid food intakes and their association with socioeconomic status and acculturation in Midwestern Latinas. I developed and validated a cultural food frequency questionnaire to assess omega-3 fatty acids. This work was developed at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Currently, as part of my postdoctoral training, in collaboration with Dr. Ferris (PI), I manage and lead an integrated research, education, and extension study that test the effectiveness of IMB (Information-Motivation-Behavioral Skills) -based intervention for reducing sweetened beverage consumption in minority preschool children. This USDA funded project uses a randomized group control design to deliver nutrition education intervention based on the IMB behavior change model using parents as the primary agent of change in Hartford, Connecticut.


I received my BA in Food Engineering from the Universidad del Callao in Peru, and my MS and PhD in Nutrition from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

Recent Publications

Contact Information
Phone405.271.2113 x41182
Mailing AddressUniversity of Oklahoma
Health Sciences Center
Department of Allied Health Sciences
1200 N Stonewall, Room 3057
College of Health Building
Oklahoma City, OK 73126-0901