Achieving and maintaining good nutrition is a key component of managing the troubling symptoms of gastrointestinal (GI) conditions. A proper diet also helps support the body’s energy levels and immune system, and can help prevent micronutrient deficiencies and malnutrition.
GI Nutrition Services, part of the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, play an integral role in Michigan Medicine’s comprehensive, multidisciplinary approach to GI care. Together with GI physicians, nurses, clinical psychologists, pelvic floor physical therapists and other specialists, we partner with patients to promote well-being and optimize quality of life.
Our registered dietitian nutritionists provide individualized nutrition care and counseling for patients with a range of GI conditions, including:
- Chronic Constipation
- Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition
- Eosinophilic Esophagitis
- Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease (GERD)
- Histamine Intolerance/Mast Cell Disorders
- Inflammatory Bowel Diseases such as Crohn’s Disease and Ulcerative Colitis
- Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
- Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease and Cirrhosis
- Short Bowel Syndrome
- Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth
- Sucrase-Isomaltase Deficiency
Specialized Nutrition Services
To help patients modify their dietary habits to achieve better nutrition and reduce GI symptoms, we rely on evidenced-based medical nutrition therapy and individualized counseling.
We specialize in specific diets that can significantly improve gastrointestinal symptoms, including:
- The low FODMAP diet for IBS
- Specific elimination diets for eosinophilic esophagitis
- Low oxalate, low residue, and gluten-free diets
During the initial consultation (approximately one hour), the patient meets with a registered dietitian nutritionist for a comprehensive health assessment including a review of GI diagnosis and symptoms, diet history, current intake of nutrients, lifestyle and behavioral factors.
Patients are educated on strategies for optimizing their diets to achieve their specific goals. For example, for the most common GI disorder we address, IBS, patients learn how the low-FODMAP diet can provide symptom relief.
Patients receive nutritional recommendations individualized to meet their nutrition and health goals, including symptom management and weight management. Nutritional plans are added to each patient’s medical chart for coordination with the rest of the GI care team.
One or more shorter follow-up appointments (approximately 30 minutes) with GI Nutrition Services are usually scheduled to monitor progress, answer questions and address concerns.
Emily Haller, MS, RDN
Emily received her Bachelor of Science degree from Indiana University, completed her Dietetic Internship at the University of Michigan, and earned her Masters of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics through Central Michigan University. Prior to joining the outpatient GI team in 2015, she provided inpatient nutrition support to Michigan Medicine pulmonary, general medicine, and GI surgery patients.
Amanda Lynett, MS, RDN
Amanda earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Nutritional Sciences and Dietetics from Michigan State University, completed her Dietetic Internship at Delta State University and earned her Master of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics through Central Michigan University. Prior to joining the GI team in 2019, she worked in inpatient clinics at Michigan Medicine providing medical nutrition therapy to medicine gastroenterology, general surgery, liver transplant and urology patients. She also previously worked at DMC Harper Hospital and Mercy Memorial Hospital.
Sara Szatkowski, RDN
Sara earned her Bachelor of Science degree and completed her Dietetic Internship at Central Michigan University. Prior to joining the GI team in 2021, she worked inpatient at Michigan Medicine providing nutrition support to general medicine, oncology, cardiac and GI surgery patients. She additionally worked outpatient providing nutrition counseling in a Care Management model at Blue Cross Blue Shield as well as in private practice helping clients to manage GI disorders and eating disorders/disordered eating. Sara is also a Certified Yoga Instructor.
Dietitians with specialized expertise in GI nutrition located in primary care settings:
Kelli Gibbs, RDN, CSO
Brighton Center for Specialty Care
Christine DuBois, RD, CDE
Northville Health Center
Kate Pelletier, MPH, RDN, CSP, CNSC
West Ann Arbor –Parkland Plaza
Erin Scarlett, MPH, RD
East Ann Arbor Health Center
Amy Schneider, MS, RD, CDE
Northville Health Center
Hepatology and Liver Transplant Clinic Dietitian:
Lorraine Bonkowski, RDN
Lorraine earned her Bachelor of Science degree from Michigan State University and completed her Dietetic Internship at Henry Ford Hospital. She has been with the University of Michigan outpatient Hepatology Clinic and Liver Transplant Clinic since 2018. In these clinics she focuses on patients with liver diseases such as cirrhosis, alcoholic liver disease, and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease including patients going through the liver transplant process.
Her prior experience as a dietitian includes pediatric oncology and hematology.
Nutritional Expertise That Goes Above and Beyond
Our comprehensive approach to GI patient care is strengthened by our participation in a variety of activities, including:
- Contributing content and recipes to MyGINutrition.com, a comprehensive online resource for patients on the low FODMAP Diet
- Maintaining a GI nutrition-focused Pinterest page with products and recipes
- Hosting FOOD: The Main Course to Digestive Health, an annual GI nutrition conference for registered dietitians
- Collaborating with GI faculty on research to advance patient care
- Providing continuing education lectures at medical conferences and community outreach programs, and sharing GI nutrition information and expertise through broadcast, print and digital media appearances
- Mentoring dietetic interns
- MyGINutrition.com, a comprehensive online resource for patients on the low FODMAP diet
- GI Nutrition Pinterest page with products and recipes
- Patient education videos from IFFGD's Norton Education Series
- Sugars: Friend or Foe? An overview of the different sugars and their impact on the human body. Learn about the different types of sugar, how much we should consume, how the body processes them, and how they could impact gastrointestinal (GI) symptoms.
- Gut Matters 102: How the gut works in relation to food, nutrition basics. An overview of the importance of nutrition to the human body and the impact on gastrointestinal disorders. Learn about the nutritional components and value of food and the advantages to making knowledgeable food choices.
Struggling with digestive health issues? We have a cooking class for you! Our team of experts will help to “separate the wheat from the chaff” by providing cutting edge information that you can bring into your homes. Classes will address a wide range of diets including but not limited to low FODMAP, gluten free, Mediterranean, and low-fiber/low-residue diets. These classes will help you discover that healthy food can not only make you feel better, but also, healthy food can look and taste great!
For more information and to register: http://umkitchen.gi.med.umich.edu
- IFFGD Norton Education Series Food Demo with Emily Haller, MS, RDN with Chef Sheree Thibault
To schedule a consultation
Patients can be referred to GI Nutrition Services by any Michigan Medicine gastroenterologist. GI Clinic Call Center: 888-229-7408