Scientist 'E' & Head  



Contact: +91-40-27197321

Brief Profile

Has a PhD in Health Communication from University of Hyderabad. He was ICMR International fellow at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore USA in 2013. Was an international invitee in the Summer School of Risk Communication at Technology University of Dresden, Germany in 2016 and International Union of Nutrition Sciences (IUNS) Workshop on Capacity and Leadership building in Nutrition Sciences in National Institute of Nutrition and Health, Tokyo, Japan.

His research interests are in health, nutrition and food safety communication with special emphasis on social, behavioral and cultural aspects of communicative processes. His research and praxis go beyond the traditional extension research/activities and integrate translational communication science with community-based approaches to promote nutrition awareness. He experimented and demonstrated the usefulness of unconventional media and methods using normative social cognitive approaches. Employing qualitative social science techniques, his research also examined knowledge, perceptions and behavioral aspects affecting food safety at multiple levels. He scripted and directed educational films on nutrition, food safety and health alongside developing many communication material. He conducted over 250 nutrition and health awareness programs for schoolchildren, women’s groups, industry, academics and other stakeholder groups. He co-ordinated the activities of the Secretariat of World Health Organization’s (WHO) Southeast Asia Nutrition Research-cum-Action Network of 11 member countries and edited the half-yearly newsletter of the Network from 2004-2012. He teaches nutrition communication to various regular and adhoc training programmes of the institute and serves as a guest faculty and resource person in Communication for training programmes at various prestigious institutes and Universities. He sits on expert committees of regulatory bodies like Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) and has been a part of technical and project advisory groups of several academic organizations.

Prior to joining NIN, he served in various capacities in TV, Press and Advertising.

Total publications: 64 (57 in indexed Journals + 7 in non-indexed journals)
Publications in the last 10 years
  1. Hedaoo RP, Kabra P, Gavaravarapu SM. “Nutritainment” -A Nutrition Education Module for Indian Adolescents. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2021; 3(2): 187 -190
  2. Pande R, Gavaravarapu SRM*, Kulkarni B. Front-of-pack nutrition labelling in India. Lancet Public Health. 2020; 5(4): e195 (Correspondence)
  3. Cherian KS, Gavaravarapu SM, Sainoji A, Yagnambhatt VR. Coaches’ perceptions about food, appetite, and nutrition of adolescent Indian athletes-A qualitative study. Heliyon. 2020; 6(2):e03354 ( (IF.1.66)
  4. Hedaoo RP, Gavaravarapu SM. Understanding body image perception and body image discontentment in early adolescence. Indian Journal of Community Health. 2020 Apr 1;32(2).
  5. Sobhana PP, Kandlakunta B, Nagaraju R, Thappatla D, Epparapalli S, Vemula SR, Gavaravarapu SR, Korrapati D. Human clinical trial to assess the effect of consumption of multigrain Indian bread on glycemic regulation in type 2 diabetic participants. Journal of Food Biochemistry. 2020 Nov;44(11):e13465.
  6. Banerjee P, Damayanthi K, Mendu VVR, Gavaravarapu SM*. Calorie counting smart phone apps: effectiveness in nutritional awareness, lifestyle modification and weight management among young Indian adults. Health Informatics Journal, 2019 ( (IF - 1.8333)
  7. Bamji MS, Rajnikant S, Gavaravarapu SRM*, "Gandhi and Health @ 150: Foot prints of ICMR's Century Long Journey" (Book Review), Current Science, 117(8): 1376-1377 (IF - 0.756)
  8. Sabbithi A, Naveenk Kumar R, Gavaravarapu SM, Balakrishna N, Vemula SR. Safety of cooked foods in home and street vended conditions beyond 2 hours: relevance of ‘safe storage temperature’ message from WHO’s 5 keys for safe food in India. International Journal of Food Safety, Nutrition and Public Health, 2019
  9. Gavaravarapu SM. Nutrition Communication - Rhetoric and Reality. Indian Journal of Medical Research. 2019; 149(3): 333-344 (IF - 2.061)
  10. Konapur A, Krishnapillai M, Nagalla B, & Gavaravarapu SM*. A sequential, exploratory, mixed-methods approach for development and validation of a context-specific knowledge, attitude and practice questionnaire on micronutrients for literate mothers of school-age children. Public Health Nutrition, 2019; 22(11): 2120-2131. doi:10.1017/S1368980019000521 (IF - 2.483)
  11. Gavaravarapu SM and Hemaltha R. Food for thought - Thought for food: Mahatma’s views on nutrition, controlled and balanced diets. Indian Journal of Medical Research. 149(7):119-127. (Special issue on Gandhi and Health @150) (IF- 2.061)
  12. Gavaravarapu SM, Hemalatha R. National Institute of Nutrition: 100 years of empowering the nation through nutrition. The Indian Journal of Medical Research. 2018 Nov;148(5):477-487 (IF - 2.061)
  13. Banerjee P, Gavaravarapu SM*. Wellness programmes in the workplace in India. The Lancet Public Health. 2018 Nov 1; 3(11):e515. (IF - 11.600)
  14. Dey K, Gavaravarapu SM*, Bannerjee P, Balakrishna N, Sudershan RV. Food scares propagated by Media and their Impact on Consumer Perception of Food safety and consumption pattern. Journal of Content, Community & Communication, 2018; 8(4): 1-7
  15. Aiswarya R, Sudershan RV, Rao MVV, Konapur A, Gavaravarapu SM*. Perceptions and Practices Related to Consumption of ‘Energy Drinks'. The Indian Journal of Nutrition And Dietetics, 2018, 55(4):412
  16. Hedaoo R, Gavaravarapu SM. Rhetoric and Reality of Nutrition Promotion through Entertainment Education-A Review of Research from Last Six Decades. Indian Journal of Public Health Research & Development. 2017 Oct 1;8(4). (Cite Score - 0.02)
  17. Gavaravarapu SM*, Saha S, Vemula SR, Mendu VV. Read-B4-U-Eat: A Multi-component Communication Module to Promote Food Label Reading Skills Among Adolescents in India. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2016 Sep; 48(8):586. (IF - 2.833)
  18. Gavaravarapu SM*, Konapur A, Saha S. Role of education and communication interventions in promoting micronutrient status in India -what research in the last two decades informs?. Journal of Communication in Healthcare. 2017; 10(4) (IF - 0.7)
  19. Surpur S, Hedaoo R , Gavaravarapu, SM. (2017). Environmental pressures: stress as a culpable factor affecting dietary choices among adolescents. Indian Journal of Applied Research. 2017 vii. 763-766.
  20. Nalam A, Gavaravarapu SM, Kodali V, Dharmapuri RR. Pictorial Learning and Visual Imagery-Based Activity Methods in Nutrition Education for Primary Schoolchildren in India. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2017, 49(3); pp.264-267 (IF - 2.8333)
  21. Sabbithi A, Reddi SL, Naveen Kumar R, Bhaskar V, SubbaRao M Gavaravarapu & Vemula SR. Identifying critical risk practices among street food handlers. British Food Journal, 2017; 119 (2); 390-400. (IF -1.717)
  22. Bhaskarachary K, Vemula SR, Gavaravarapu SM, Joshi AK. Traditional Foods, Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals. Proceedings of the Indian National Science Academy, 2016: 82 (5); 1565-1577. (IF - 0.4)
  23. Reddi SL, Kumar RN, SubbaRao GM, Rao MV, Sudershan RV. (2016). Bacteriological quality of drinking water at point of use and hand hygiene of primary food preparers: implications for household food safety. Journal of Water Sanitation and Hygiene for Development. 2016 Jun 1; 6(2):224-30. (IF - 0.977)
  24. Yella R, Kumar RN, Vemula SR, Nagalla B, Gavaravarapu SM*. Food Safety in Domestic Refrigerators-A Mixed Methods Study to Identify Key Messages for Promoting Safe Storage Practices among Households. The Indian Journal of Nutrition and Dietetics. 2016 Mar 1;53(1):1-4.
  25. Gavaravarapu SM*, Rao KM, Nagalla B, & Avula L (2015). Assessing Differences in Risk Perceptions About Obesity Among “Normal-Weight” and “Overweight” Adolescents -A Qualitative Study. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior. 2015. 47(6):488-97. (IF - 2.833)
  26. Gavaravarapu SM, & Nair KM. From farm to plate & beyond-A culture & context sensitive perspective for food safety. The Indian Journal of Medical Research, 2015; 141(4), 377. (IF - 2.061)
  27. Konapur A, Gavaravarapu SM, Gupta S, Nair KM. Millets in Meeting Nutrition Security: Issues and Way Forward for India. Indian Journal of Nutrition & Dietetics, 2014; 51(3):306-321.
  28. Maheshwar Mekam, Gavaravarapu SM, venkaiah K, Raghunatha Rao D. The quality of nutrition research reporting by leading daily newspapers in India. Journal of Media and Communication Studies, 2014; 6(6):92-98. (IF - )
  29. Boddula S, Sudershan RV, Balakrishna N, Saha S and Gavaravarapu SM*. Food Risk Perceptions of Women in Rural and Urban Households- A Study in India. European Journal of Nutrition & Food Safety, 2014, 4(4): 380-391 (IF - 0.98)
  30. Gavaravarapu SM* and Pavarala V. Communicating Nutrition in Community Settings- Case Studies in Critical Examination of Institutional Approaches in India. Journal of Creative Communications, 2014, 9(1):23-48. (IF - 0.309)
  31. Gavaravarapu SM*, Smith KC, Rimal RN. A case for refining the WHO Global Strategy on Food Safety: Perspectives from India. The Lancet Global Health, 2013, 1(5): e254-e255. (IF - 15.873)
  32. Vemula SR, Gavaravarapu SM, Rao MVV, Mathur P, Laxmaiah A. Knowledge and Practices of Using Food Label Information Among Adolescents Attending Schools in Kolkata, India. Public Health Nutrition, Available online first: doi:10.1017/S1368980013002231 (IF - 2.526)
  33. Saha S, Sudershan RV, Rao MVV and Gavaravarapu SM*. Knowledge and Practices of Using Food Label Information Among Adolescents Attending Schools in Kolkata, India. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior., 2013; 45(6): 773-779. (IF- 2.833)
  34. Gavaravarapu SM. Knowledge Translation—Some Perspectives for Nutrition Education and Communication. Journal of nutrition. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 2013; 45(4): e5-e5. (IF - 2.833)
  35. Gavaravarapu SM*. Group Quiz: A Tool for Nutrition Education and Self-assessment. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 2013; 45 (4): 32-35. (IF - 2.833)
  36. Gavaravarapu SM*, Sudershan RV, Laxmaiah A. Food labeling in india-a study on current scenario of regulation, compliance by industry and consumer perceptions. Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism, 2013; 63:828. (Abstract) (IF - 3.059)
  37. Maheshwar M, SubbaRao GM, Rao DR. Evaluation of nutrition and reports based on research studies in popular Indian newspapers. Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism. 2013: 63 (Suppl. 1); 841. (Abstract) (IF - 3.059)
  38. Sudershan RV, SubbaRao GM, Rao MVV, Sivakumar B & Polasa K. Mapping priorities for promoting food safety in Indian households through development and validation of integrated scores based on key determinants. Annals Nutrition and Metabolism, 2013, 63 (suppl 1). (Abstract) (IF - 3.059)
  39. SubbaRao GM*, Vijayapushpam T, Venkaiah K and Pavarala V. Quantitative and qualitative analysis of nutrition and food safety information in school science textbooks of India. Health Education Journal. 2012: 71(6); 725-735 (IF - 1.048)
  40. SubbaRao GM*. Knowledge sharing and knowledge translation - New perspectives in communication for dietetics. Journal of Indian Dietetic Association. 2012; 36S: 36-37.
  41. Subba Rao GM*. Nutrition communication thus far and further - A critical examination of research and practice. Indian Journal of Science Communication. 2009; 8(2): 3-13
  42. SubbaRao GM*. Quiz as a method of Nutrition Education and Communication. Journal of Indian Dietetic Association. 2011; 35S: 75-76.
  43. SubbaRao GM*, Sudershan RV and Sesikeran B. Regulation of Junk Food Advertising and Marketing - Will it work in India? Indian Food Industry. 2011: 30(5 & 6): 21-24.
Total number of books and book chapters: 11 ; Edited
  1. Ravindra K Vemula & SubbaRao M Gavaravarapu (Eds.). Health Communication in the changing media landscape: Perspectives from developing countries. 2016. London: Palgrave MacMillan.
  2. Bhaskarachary K, Sudershan RV and SubbaRao GM (Eds.) A Handbook for Tomorrow’s Dietitians. Hyderabad: AP Chapter of the Indian Dietetic Association. 2008.
  3. Bhaskarachary K, Sudershan RV and Subba Rao GM (Eds.) Concepts and Skills for Practical Dietetics. Hyderabad: AP Chapter of the Indian Dietetic Association. 2010.
  1. Longavh T, SubbaRao GM, Uday Kumar P. NIN@100 - Empowering the Nation through Nutrition - NIN Centenary Book (ISBN - 978-81-910091-8-7). 2017. Hyderabad: National Institute of Nutrition.
  2. SubbaRao GM and Sesikeran B. NIN: 1918-2011 - Nine Decades of Leadership in Nutrition (ISBN- 978-93-5267-678-1). National Institute of Nutrition: Hyderabad. Book released by Union Minister for Health and family Welfare during ICMR centenary year celebrations in New Delhi on 15th November 2011.
Awards and Honours


1. Fellow of National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS), 2021

2. Fellow of Royal Society of Public Health, UK, 2019


3. VN Patwardhan Prize for excellence in Nutrition related areas from Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR)

4. ICMR (Indian Council of Medical Research) International Fellowship for Young Scientists 2012 - 3 month tenure at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore, MD, USA. Jan - April 2013

5. Finalist and runner-up in the NASI-SCOPUS Young Scientists Awards 2014 in Social Sciences


6. Mid-career Award in Nutrition Exhibition & Behavior Science Section from American Society for Nutrition, 2020

7. Silver Author Recognition Award from Journal of Nutrition Education Behavior (Elsevier Journal with IF - 2.869) for frequency and excellence in manuscripts, for 3 consecutive years - 2018, 2019 & 2020

8. Platinum City Strategist Award 2009 from Foundation for Futuristic Cities, Hyderabad for developing a strategy on streamlining street food vending in Hyderabad.

9. JN Bose Memorial Award for Community Nutrition - 2008 from the Indian Dietetic Association.

10. Young Scientist Award in Community Nutrition from Nutrition Society of India in 2004


11. Asian Editor for American Journal of Health Behavior since 2013-2021 (Impact Factor - 1.176)

12. Chair, Health Communication Working Group, International Association for Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) 2016 - till date

13. Editorial Board Member, Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior (2011-17 &2020-23)

14. Treasurer, Nutrition Society of India (NSI), 2015 - till date

15. Review Editor for ‘Frontiers in Communication’ Journal, 2016- till date

  1. Member, Scientific Panel on Food Labelling and Claims/Advertisements, Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI).
  2. Member of the Editorial Board, Journal of Nutrition Education & Behavior for a three year term starting Jan 2020.
  3. Member, Technical Advisory Group, A Scalable Programme IncorpoRating Early child development interventions (ASPIRE) undertaken by UNICEF HFO, Sangath, and WCD Telangana.
  4. Elected as Chair, Health Communication Working Group, International Association of Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) for a 4 year term – 2019-2023.
  5. Member, Departmental Committee, Department of Communication, SN School, University of Hyderabad
  6. Chair, Health Communication & Change Working Group of the International Association of Media and Communication Research (IAMCR) (2015- 2019).
  7. Treasurer, Nutrition Society of India (NSI) for 4 year term 2015-2019.
  8. Asian Editor for American Journal of Health Behavior since 2013 (Impact Factor – 1.176)
  9. Served on the Board of Editors for the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior (2011- 2018).