Nancee is the lead dietitian for the UCLA Vatche and Tamar Manoukian Division of Digestive Diseases. Nancee was recruited in 2012 to help develop a comprehensive GI nutrition program to enhance care for patients with specific nutritional issues and to provide ongoing nutritional education to UCLA GI fellows, gastroenterologists and other health care professionals. The GI nutrition program is now an integral part of the division’s Integrative Digestive Health and Wellness Program.
In addition to her lead role, Nancee continues her clinical nutrition practice, counseling patients on diagnoses such as irritable bowel syndrome, inflammatory bowel disease, celiac disease, short bowel syndrome and idiopathic or functional bowel disorders. She also leads the functional gastrointestinal disorders workgroup for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics Dietitians in Gastrointestinal Disorders (DIGID) Practice Group. Nancee shares her expertise on nutrition and digestive disorders by speaking at national conferences. Her current research includes the reintroduction phase of the low FODMAP diet with Lin Chang, MD, co-director of the UCLA G. Oppenheimer Center for Neurobiology of Stress and Resilience. Nancee is also researching different types of diets and their potential effects on remission and flare states in IBD with Berkeley Limetkai, MD, PhD, director of clinical research for the Center for Inflammatory Bowel Diseases. She is spearheading an effort to formalize a GI-specific dietitian group housed jointly under the American Gastroenterological Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She spearheaded an effort to formalize a GI-specific dietitian group housed jointly under the American Gastroenterological Association and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics which became official in 2020. She also leads the Disorders of Brain Gut Interaction workgroup for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics in Gastrointestinal Disorders (DIGID) Practice Group.
Nancee graduated from California State University, Los Angeles, where she earned her masters of science in nutrition. She completed her dietetic internship at the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center and at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she was mentored by Dr. Chang.
Natalie Manitius, MPH, RDN
UCLA Health - Century City Primary Care Clinic
Natalie is a registered dietitian nutritionist practicing in gastrointestinal disorders. Natalie received her masters of public health in nutritional sciences and dietetics at the University of Michigan, where she completed her clinical training with subspecialties in gastroenterology and preventive cardiology. Her research interests include the gut-brain axis, as well as the interconnectedness between food systems, the environment, and gastrointestinal health. Natalie’s practice is informed by both public health and individualized nutrition, and she believes that addressing the whole person through a multidisciplinary approach is key to achieving optimal health.
Janelle Smith, MS, RDN, CEDRD
UCLA Health - Santa Monica & Westwood GI Clinic
Janelle is a registered dietitian nutritionist with expertise in both gastrointestinal disorders and eating disorders. She was motivated to become a dietitian when she was diagnosed with celiac disease in 2009. She believes that understanding the individualized effects of food in the body is an empowering part of treatment. Janelle utilizes mindfulness and self-compassion in addition to diet changes to help patients minimize diet restrictions and live a fulfilling life.
Janelle received her masters of science in nutrition and dietetics from California State University Northridge, then trained at the Veterans Health Association in Los Angeles. She is a certified eating disorder dietitian through the organization, International Association of Eating Disorder Professionals (IAEDP). She is a leader within the community of celiac patients and professionals, advocating for faster diagnosis, better care and improved quality of life.