Katherine Bennett, MPH, RD, CLEC
Clinical Dietitian, CHOC Hospital
Katherine Bennett is a Registered Dietitian at CHOC Hospital. She completed, her Dietetic Internship at the University of Virginia and began a career in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at St Joseph’s Hospital in Phoenix, Arizona. Looking for cooler weather, Katherine moved to California and continued her work in neonatology and pediatric nutrition at Miller Children’s Hospital in Long Beach. Katherine received her Master’s Degree in Public Health from UCLA and also completed her CLEC. She currently works in the Gastroenterology outpatient setting and the Cardiac Intensive Care Unit.
Lindsay Rypkema, RD, CSP, CLEC
Clinical Dietitian, CHOC Hospital
Lindsay Rypkema is a Registered Dietitian at CHOC Hospital. She completed her Dietetic Internship at the University of North Dakota and has worked as a pediatric dietitian for 10 years including Mayo Clinic, Rady Children’s, and UCSF. Lindsay has a wide variety of experience working with GI patients, most recently at a multidisciplinary IBD clinic at UCSF. Lindsay also has credentials in Pediatric Nutrition (CSP) and is a Certified Lactation Educator (CLEC). She has been published in Nutrition Connection/PNPG Building Block for Life and Support Line.
Carol Henderson, PhD, RD, LD
Medical Advisor, Autism, Nutricia North America
Dr. Henderson graduated cum laude in Human Nutrition and Food Sciences at Ohio University,
Athens, OH (B.S.), and received her M.S. and Ph.D. in Epidemiology and Biostatistics at the University of Cincinnati, Cincinnati, OH. She previously served as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Nutrition at Georgia State University, Atlanta and an adjunct Assistant Professorship appointment in the Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, Emory University School of Medicine, Atlanta, GA. Dr. Henderson’s previous work has included both clinical and research efforts focused on understanding the nutritional issues related to a variety of chronic medical diseases including obesity, rheumatic conditions and eosinophilic gastrointestinal disorders at both Emory University and Cincinnati Children’s. Within the past year, Dr. Henderson accepted the position in the Medical & Scientific Affairs Division at Nutricia North America in Rockville, MD. As a Medical Advisor, she focuses on increasing the awareness and appropriate assessment/management of gastrointestinal issues/disorders that frequently occur in children with autism.
Elizabeth A. English, RD, CLC
Clinical Dietitian, Rady Children’s Hospital
For the past 20 years, Elizabeth has been practicing pediatric clinical nutrition with an emphasis on gastrointestinal diseases/conditions, allergy/EoE, childhood obesity and nutrition for the pediatric special needs population. She has enjoyed being actively involved in the ongoing expanding RD role of working with chronically ill children. The dietetics profession and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics have been continually evolving and promoting the importance of the dietitian in maintaining the health and well-being of the pediatric population.
Patricia Novak, MPH, RD, CLE
Clinical Dietitian, Children’s Hospital Los Angeles
Consultant, Professional Child Development Associates
Patricia has over 30 years of experience working with children with autism, developmental disabilities and chronic illness. She has worked in a variety of programs including interdisciplinary feeding clinics at the University Center for Excellence in Developmental Disabilities (UCEDD) at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA) and Professional Child Development Associates (PCDA), Pasadena; outpatient specialty clinics at CHLA ,Sierra Vista Hospital, San Luis Obispo and UCLA Neuropsychiatric Institute; and school based California Children’s Services (CCS) clinics. She has published in the areas of feeding, food allergies and autism.
Cindy Kim, PhD, ABPP
Pediatric Psychologist, CHOC Hospital
Dr. Kim is a board-certified clinical psychologist at CHOC Hospital with expertise in the areas of pediatric feeding disorders, autism spectrum disorder, infant and toddler assessment, anxiety, depression, and family and behavior therapy. She earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from Rosemead School of Psychology/Biola University after receiving a bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of California, Riverside, and a master’s degree in clinical psychology from San Diego State University. Dr. Kim completed an APA-accredited internship and post-doctoral fellowship at USC/Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. Dr. Kim has several ongoing research projects involving pediatric feeding disorders and has recently coauthored Successful Gastrostomy Tube Weaning Program Using an Intensive Multidisciplinary Team Approach in JPGN.
Leigh Volker, LCSW
Clinical Social Worker, CHOC Hospital
Leigh is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker who has been serving families at CHOC for the past 10 years. She earned her Master of Social Work from Loma Linda University and Bachelor of Science in Human Services from California State University, Fullerton. Leigh works in the Gastroenterology Division, providing psychosocial assessment, supportive counseling, crisis intervention and resources to children and families with a wide array of GI diagnoses, including IBD. She is also an integral member of CHOC Multidisciplinary Feeding Program, has had the opportunity to speak at both National and California Speech and Hearing Association Conferences on An Intensive Multidisciplinary Therapy Model for Complex Pediatric Feeding Disorders and Gastrostomy tube weaning, and recently coauthored Successful Gastrostomy Tube Weaning Program Using an Intensive Multidisciplinary Team Approach in JPGN.
Mom of patient on blenderized tube feeding
Three years ago when I became pregnant with my one and only baby boy, it was my plan to breastfeed until he was on solid foods. When he was born prematurely with neurological issues and unable to swallow without aspiration- I had to shift my perspective of the natural, typical bonding and nurturing of my baby boy. Unable to breastfeed any longer, I did the next best thing I could for him- I pumped breast milk for over two years, and had to supplement it with formula. My son had a history of not being able to stomach formula, and had also developed severe acid reflux. I was determined to provide him with breast milk until he was completely on real food- the Blended Diet. Being able to choose and prepare my son’s food (as any parent does) on a daily basis, and see the hugely positive impact it had on his well-being and overall health has reinstated that deeply embedded, natural desire to nurture my son back to health. Since being on the blended real foods, it has transformed his world- he is happier and has more energy than ever before. He is learning to eat orally and I believe that his diet has played a huge role in those positive developments as well.
Julie H. Lee
Mom of patient on blenderized tube feeding
We started the blenderized diet for Noah back in February of 2014 because after outgrowing his preemie formula, the next step was premixed shakes/drinks/etc. such as Peptamen and PediaSure. While we understood the function of Noah needing all of his calories and nutrients, I wasn’t a fan of the second ingredient being sugar. Noah’s brother and sister were on an all Organic, Non-GMO, no meat/dairy, gluten free, fresh and clean diet and I didn’t feel it was fair for our “sickest” child to have to eat processed foods. That’s when we had the thought of, “well why can’t Noah eat what the others are eating?” which led us to Katherine and the start of blenderized feedings. Although his siblings have been introduced to dairy, meats, and gluten, Noah continues to eat a clean diet with his food being freshly prepared every morning and is never frozen. We have seen a tremendous change in him since starting the blenderized diet and he seems to be benefitting from the fresh ingredients and good organic food.