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Iris Janssen

PhD student



  • - Body image
  • - Interventions, treatment


My research focusses on obesity and binge eating disorder. Within this field I am interested in metabolism, the role of cognitions and their relation to eating behavior. Why are some people convinced that they can eat less than others? How can we explain differences in metabolism and our ideas about causes of obesity?
Aside from this, I also study the role of imagery in people with eating pathology. This concerns imagery related to binges but also to earlier negative or traumatic experiences. For earlier research we know that people with eating pathology frequently have experienced negative events. For example, they are bullied regarding their appearance or weight or they have been a victim of sexual violence. I am interested in providing and improving treatment techniques to help process these negative experiences.
Before I started as PhD student in the Eat Group in June 2016, I did the Bachelor Psychology and Neuroscience, followed by the Research Master Cognitive and Clinical Neuroscience with the specialization Psychopathology at Maastricht University. During the research master I did research into the necessity of cognitive restructuring preceding Imagery Rescripting in a student population with mild psychological complaints. Additionally, I did a clinical internship at Virenze-RIAGG Maastricht in the anxiety, eating and somatoform disorder team.


I am involved as a coordinator or a tutor in Bad Habits, Clinical Assessment Skills, Anxiety Disorders and Psychiatric Anamnesis. I also enjoy supervising students with their writing, for example, a bachelor thesis or elective on topics that are related to my field. This can be obesity, binge eating disorder, metabolism and clinical treatment of eating disorders.

Clinical work

Aside from my work at the university I also work as a therapist at Virenze-RIAGG Maastricht in the anxiety, eating and somatoform disorder team.