What is a Registered Dietitian (RD)?

A registered, licensed dietitian practices the science of medical nutrition therapy. Based on your nutritional status, condition, illness or injury, a dietitian will work with you to optimize your treatment and aid your recovery. Not all "nutritionists" have the same expertise or training. It is important to check their training and credentials.

All of the dietitians employed at Cleveland Clinic are registered with the Commission on Dietetic Registration, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, and are licensed dietitians in the State of Ohio. Every dietitian at Cleveland Clinic has completed a 4 year baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university and a dietetic internship or comparable supervised experience.

Several dietitians also have advanced degrees and/or specialty certifications.

What can a Registered Dietitian do for me?

An RD will help you develop a personal diet plan to help you achieve your goals. For more information or to schedule an outpatient appointment to see an RD, call 216.444.3046.

How can Medical Nutrition Therapy provided by a Registered Dietitian help me?

  • Lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels to normal.
  • Lower body weight, which reduces the risk for many chronic diseases associated with obesity.
  • Improve blood glucose levels and control high blood pressure, reducing or eliminating medications for diabetes and hypertension.

How will I know if I need to see a Registered Dietitian?

People seek guidance from an RD for many reasons. Some individuals are concerned with wellness and disease prevention issues, such as learning to eat healthier to decrease the risk of heart disease, cancer, or other chronic diseases.

Others, including weekend athletes, would like to learn more about sports nutrition, infant/toddler feeding, or better ways to eat to fight obesity or the aging process.

Medical reasons to make an appointment with an RD include, but are not limited to:

  • High blood cholesterol and heart disease
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Cancer
  • Inflammatory bowel disease and other gastrointestinal (stomach/bowel disorders)
  • Pregnancy
  • Kidney disease
  • Overweight/Obesity
Meet Our Dietitians

Meet Our Dietitians

Cleveland Clinic's Section of Nutrition Therapy provides a full staff of registered dietitians and dietetic technicians that are an integral part of the interdisciplinary team. The inpatient staff works with doctors, nurses, therapists, and other health care professionals to provide optimal care for our patients. Specifically, dietitians and technicians work with patients to improve nutrition status, prevent malnutrition in times of prolonged sickness, or to manage diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, kidney disease, digestive disorders, and many others.

Lisa Burnett

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: Nutrition and Dietetics, Kent State University; BA Psychology, The Ohio State University
  • Specialty Areas:Wellness/Prevention, Sport and Fitness Nutrition, Fueling for Performance
  • Other:Education/Counseling at CCF Main Campus; Member of the Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutrition Practice Group, Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics; Ohio Dietetic Association; Fundraising Committee for the Cleveland Dietetic Association

Gillian Culbertson

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: MS, Medical Nutrition, The Ohio State University; BS Foods, Nutrition, Management, University of Akron; Clinical Experience, AP4 through the Ohio State University; Certification, CNSD
  • Specialty Areas: Weight management; Diabetes management; Oncology Nutrition; Enteral/Parenteral Nutrition, Lipid Management
  • Other: Member of American Society of Parenteral and Eneral Nutrition; Member of American Dietetic Association and Ohio Dietetic Association; Member of the Sports, Cardiovascular and Wellness Nutritionists Practice Group; Vegetarian Practice Group

Beth Czerwony

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: Masters of Science, Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University; Bachelors of Science, Dietetics, University of Akron; Dietetic Internship, Louis Stokes Cleveland VAMC
  • Specialty Areas: Certificate in Adult Weight Management; Weight Loss management; Diabetes management; Lipid management; Wellness / Prevention
  • Professional Memberships: Cleveland Dietetic Association, Ohio Dietetic Association, and Academy in Nutrition and Dietetics, Weight Management Practice group, and Diabetes Dietetics Practice Group
  • Locations: Beachwood, Lakewood, Twinsburg and Willoughby Hills

Erin Doran

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: Bachelor of Science, Kinesiology and Health, Miami University, Oxford, Ohio
  • Dietetic Internship:  Sodexo Distance Education, Los Angeles, California
  • Specialty Areas: Weight Management, Lipid Management, Diabetes Management, Wellness/Prevention
  • Professional Memberships: Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Ohio Dietetic Association
  • Other: Education/Counseling at CCF Main Campus Bariatric and Metabolic Institute, Strongsville Family Health & Surgery Center, Independence Family Health Center

Andrea Dunn

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: BS Food and Nutrition, Notre Dame College of Ohio, Cleveland, Ohio; Dietetic Internship, Miami Valley Hospital, Dayton, Ohio
  • Specialty Areas: Diabetes Prevention and Management - Type 2 and Gestational Diabetes; Heart Health and Blood Pressure Management; Weight Management; Women's Health/Wellness/Prevention, Kidney Stone Prevention and Lifestyle Management, Chronic Kidney Disease
  • Other: Helen Brown Award Winner 2002; Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE); Educator/counselor at Richard E. Jacobs Family Health Center, Avon, OH; Experience in nutrition teaching/counseling since 1979; Advisory Board member for Heart Advisor newsletter; Have given numerous professional and lay presentations; Member of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Ohio Dietetic Association and Cleveland Dietetic Association; Member of Weight Management Dietetic Practice Group and Diabetes Care and Education (DCE) Dietetic Practice Group; DCE Publications Committee Chair, 2004 - 2006; DCE NewsFlash Editor, 2007 - 2009; DCE Communications Coordinator, 2009 - 2011, DCE chair (chair-elect/chair/industry chair), 2011 - 2013; Member American Association of Diabetes Educators; Member American Diabetes Association

Mira llic

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: MS, Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University; BA, Psychology, Case Western Reserve University; Dietetic Internship, Huron Road Hospital, Cleveland, Ohio
  • Specialty Areas: Lipid Management; Wellness/Prevention; Weight Management; Diabetes Management
  • Other: Educator/counselor at CCF Main Campus Executive Health; Preventive Medicine Dept; Experience in nutrition counseling since 1984; Member of American Dietetic Association

Kate Patton

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: BS, Dietetics & Nutrition, University of Dayton; Dietetic Internship, Cleveland Clinic; Masters of Education Exercise Science, Cleveland State University
  • Specialty Areas: Preventive Cardiology, Sports Nutrition
  • Other: Certified Specialist in Sports Dietetics, instructor for "Weigh to a Healthy Heart" group weight loss program, member of American Dietetic Association, member of Sports, Cardiovascular Nutrition, and Wellness Dietetic Practice group

Maxine Smith

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: BS, Dietetics, University of Akron, Akron, OH
  • Specialty Areas: Wellness/Prevention: Weight Management; Lipid Management
  • Other: Certified by the American Dietetic Association in Adult Weight Management
  • Location: Main Campus

Jill Stovsky

  • Specialty: Outpatient dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: B.S. Allied Heath The Ohio State University, MEd Exercise Science Cleveland State University
  • Specialty Areas: Weight management, diabetes management, lipid management, sports nutrition, preventive cardiology/wellness
  • Other: Educator/counselor at Hillcrest Diabetes Education Department, Cleveland Clinic Administrative Campus. Member of Cleveland Dietetic Association, Ohio Dietetic Association, American Dietetic Association, Diabetes Care and Practice Education Group, Member of Aerobics and Fitness Association of America and certified group fitness instructor. Certified in indoor cycling and insanity (R) group fitness as well.

Lauren K. Sullivan

  • Education: BS Dietetics, University of Akron; AP4 Pre-Professional Practice Program, Marriott Corporation, Healthcare Division – East; George Washington University Medical Center, Washington, D.C.
  • Specialty Areas: Weight Loss Management and Gastric Bypass; Diabetes Management
  • Professional Memberships: American Dietetic Association; Ohio Dietetic Association; Diabetes Care and Education Dietetic Practice Group
  • Other: Educator/Counselor @ CCF Main Campus Bariatric & Metabolic Institute; Mentor Families with Children Newly Diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes; Multiple Articles Published in the Diabetes Forecast

Anna Taylor

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: MS Family & Consumer Sciences, Illinois State University; BS Dietetics and minor in Health Promotion, Bowling Green State University
  • Dietetic Internship: Illinois State University, Normal, Illinois
  • Specialty Areas: Weight Management, Diabetes Management, Lipid Management, Wellness/Prevention
  • Professional Memberships: American Dietetic Association; Ohio Dietetic Association; Diabetes Care and Education Dietetic Practice Group
  • Other: Education/Counseling at CCF Main Campus, Lorain Family Health & Surgery Center, Elyria Family Health & Surgery Center, and Cleveland Clinic Wellness & Preventive Medicine in Lyndhurst, Ohio; Member of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, Ohio Dietetic Association

Margaret (Peggy) Zeller

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Education: BA Dietetics, Ursuline College, Cleveland, Ohio; Dietetic Internship, Good Samaritan Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • Specialty Areas: Lipid Management; Wellness/Prevention; Diabetes Management
  • Other: Nutrition education/counseling at CCF Solon and Twinsburg Family Health Centers; Numerous professional and lay presentations; Member of the American Dietetic Association; member of Diabetes Care and Education practice group.

Julia Zumpano

  • Specialty: Outpatient Dietitian
  • Gender: Female
  • Specialty: Cardiology, Weight Loss, Hypertension, Disease Prevention
  • Education: University of Akron; Dietetic Internship: Cleveland Clinic; Certified Fitness Instructor
  • She focuses on strategies and behavior modification individualized to each patient's lifestyle, needs and readiness to change.
  • She also 'practices what she preaches' as a certified fitness instructor, leading Cardio-Kickboxing and a variety of other fitness classes at the Employee Fitness Center in the Walker Center. Julia is also a vegetarian.


Eat Right at School

Kids can eat healthier in school – and enjoy it!

Cleveland Clinic's "Eat Right at School" program is specifically designed to help schools ensure their menu items are truly healthy. Registered dietitians from our Center for Human Nutrition are available to evaluate your school's menus against our nutrition checklist. The criteria meet and exceed the USDA school lunch program guidelines.

Cleveland Clinic knows that healthy eating is important at every stage of life, and childhood is a particularly crucial time to teach good habits that will serve students well throughout their lives. That's why we designed our "Eat Right at School" program to provide a solid foundation for students to strive for an even healthier lifestyle in the years ahead.

Ready to become and "Eat Right at School" partner?

If you would like to work with our dietitians to have your school menu receive the Cleveland Clinic "Eat Right at School" seal of approval, contact Nutrition Manager Laura Jeffers, RD, LD at 216.444.3046.

What to Expect

What to Expect

The Registered Dietitian (RD) works individually with each client to assess their nutritional needs, implement a tailored plan of care and follows up with the client until the goals of the nutritional plan of care are met. The RD provides treatment for malnutrition, chronic or acute illness, and education for diet therapy.

During your appointment, the RD will evaluate various health factors to determine your nutritional status.

  • The assessment begins with an evaluation of your ability to consume food.
  • The RD looks at current and past eating habits. A diet record completed by you or a family member is reviewed and discussed with you.
  • The RD then obtains medical history such as weight and weight history, selected laboratory tests that may affect nutrition and/or your results, and medications that may affect nutritional status.
  • The RD then examines you for signs of under- or over-nourishment; conditions that may affect swallowing, digestion, and the body's ability to absorb or use the food eaten.
  • Food intolerance and allergies; religious, cultural, ethnic, and personal food preferences; and diet prescriptions are also taken into account.
  • The RD may also ask for information from the physician or other providers such as nurses, speech pathologists, and occupational therapists.
  • The RD interprets all the information and designs an individualized plan of action including education, if needed.
  • Two to three nutrition therapy sessions are recommended for optimal results.

Benefits of Nutrition Therapy in Acute Care

In the acute-care setting, factors contributing to an increase in the demand for medical nutrition therapy include the aging of the population, the higher acuity level of hospitalized patients, and the coexistence of malnutrition with chronic diseases. Adequate nutrition is essential to reduce morbidity and mortality from acute and chronic disease. Well-nourished persons are more resistant to disease and are better able to tolerate other therapy and to recover from acute illness, surgical interventions, and trauma. Nutrition plays a direct role in the recovery of a patient from disease or the treatment associated with the disease.

Benefits of Nutrition Therapy in Preventive Care

The goals of medical nutrition therapy in preventive care are to keep people healthy in their communities; to reduce the incidence and severity of preventable diseases; to improve health and quality of life; and to reduce total medical costs, particularly costs for drug therapy, surgery, hospitalization, and extended care. Healthy People 2000 states the following objective: “Increase to at least 75% the proportion of primary care providers who provide nutrition assessment and counseling and/or referral to qualified nutritionists or dietitians” The US complete dietary history, understand barriers to changes in eating habits, and offer individualized guidance on food selection and preparation, should refer patients to a registered dietitian or qualified nutritionist for further counseling.

Benefits of Nutrition Therapy in Outpatient Care

Current health care payment systems have decreased the length of hospital stays. As a result, medical nutrition therapy services to prepare patients needing to follow special diets are very limited in the inpatient setting. These services may need to be provided and reinforced in the outpatient setting. Examples include medical nutrition therapy for diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol, and kidney failure.

Source: The Journal of the American Dietetic Association, 1995;95: 88-91.

Appointments & Locations

Appointments & Locations

Lifestyle changes, such as dietary modifications, often require on-going support and guidance. Whenever possible, family members are included in the comprehensive outpatient education plan.

Patient education and lifestyle changes take time. You and the dietitian will be working together over several follow-up appointments to address your medical and nutritional needs. Outpatient appointments make lifestyle modifications easier on you.


To make an appointment, please call 216.444.3046 or 800.223.2273 ext. 4-3046 (toll-free).

Virtual Visits

Preparing for Your Appointment

To prepare for your first appointment please download and complete the appropriate form for your visit:


Mailing Address:

Nutrition Therapy
Cleveland Clinic
9500 Euclid Avenue/M17
Cleveland, OH 44195

Appointment Types

Individual Onsite Appointment

A one-on-one appointment with an RDN who will create an individualized nutrition plan based on personal goals, medical and diet history, blood tests, measurements, and physical exam.

  • Establish realistic short term and long term goals
  • Learn techniques to help you stay on track
  • Obtain ongoing encouragement and support to overcome barriers
  • Most appropriate for complex medical and nutritional issues including malnutrition

Location: Main Campus, Affiliate Hospitals, Family Health Centers
Time: 45 Minutes, Best results are achieved with three or more visits depending on diagnosis
Cost: $52/ 15 minutes, insurance coverage varies based on plan. Covered by CC Employee Health Plan

Virtual Consultation (Individual)

A video nutrition consultation similar to the Individual Onsite appointment with a few added benefits.

  • Convenience of a session via your smartphone, computer or tablet
  • Beneficial for those with time or mobility constraints
  • A cost savings to in-person appointments

Location: Anywhere You Are!
Time: Initial Visit – 30 Minutes, Follow Up Visit – 20 Minutes
Cost: Initial Visit – $49, Follow-Up Visit – $20, self pay prior to service

Shared Nutrition Appointment (SNA)

A group nutrition appointment with an RDN for two or more patients who share specific nutrition diagnoses.

  • Often less wait time for an appointment
  • A strong focus on education
  • Group environment offers enhanced learning and support
  • Beneficial for those with chronic diseases
  • Evening sessions available

Location: Main Campus, Affiliate Hospitals, Family Health Centers
Time: 60 Minutes, Best results are achieved with three or more visits depending on diagnosis
Cost: Cost based on length of visit, insurance coverage varies based on plan. Covered by CC EHP

Shared Medical Appointments (SMA)

A physician-led group medical appointment with the added support of an RDN to provide nutrition education, a diet plan and guidance towards lifestyle changes.

  • Multi-disciplinary, team approach
  • Provides an interactive, supportive environment
  • Typically less wait time for an appointment
  • Evening sessions available

Location: Main Campus, Affiliate Hospitals, Family Health Centers
Time: Typical 90 Minutes, however variable
Cost: No additional nutrition cost to that of the shared medical appointment

“Eat Well” Group Nutrition Class

A series of weekly classes led by RDN offering comprehensive information and application techniques that promote lasting behavior change to support weight loss efforts. Emphasizes education, goal setting, and lifestyle change.

  • Offer comprehensive information and application techniques
  • Opportunity to share and learn from others' experiences
  • Evening sessions available
  • Available to CC EHP participants only at this time

Location: Main Campus, Affiliate Hospitals, Family Health Centers
Time: 30-60 Minutes
Cost: Covered by CC EHP, based on eligibility




Download a recipe from our registered dietitians:


Other Resources

Below are useful resources for reliable nutrition information from other organizations:

Please Note: The information provided above is considered to be general information, and is not intended to replace the medical advice of your doctor or health care provider. Please consult your health care provider for advice about a specific medical condition.

Calculate Your BMI

Calculate Your BMI

What is your BMI?

BMI stands for Body Mass Index, and is a measurement or ratio of your weight versus your height. It indicates the effect of body weight on disease and death.

BMI Weight Status
Below 18.5 Underweight
18.5-24.9 Normal
25.0-29.9 Overweight
30.0-34.9 Obese
Above 35 Morbidly Obesity

How is BMI Calculated?

BMI is calculated by dividing your weight (in kilograms) by your height (in meters) squared. You can use the following equation:

Calculate your BMI

BMI Chart

Please note: If you suspect you have a weight problem, please consult your physician.

What does this all mean?

A BMI calculated between 18 and 25 is considered to be a healthy weight. If BMI is between 25 and 30, this is considered to be a category known as overweight. A BMI above 30 implies obesity. Obesity is related to a range of significant health problems including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, sleep apnea, and others. If your BMI is above 25, consider visiting a Registered Dietitian to lean how you can develop a plan to manage your weight and avoid negative health problems.

For Medical Professionals

For Medical Professionals

Physician Referrals

Cleveland Clinic welcomes the opportunity to partner with you in caring for your patients. Our dedicated Referring Physician team is available around-the-clock and committed to serving you and your patients.

Please contact our Referring Physician Hotline, available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, for all your needs, by calling 855.REFER.123 (855.733.3712).

Dietetic Internship

Since its inception in 1989, Cleveland Clinic's Dietetic Internship Program has provided training in the areas of clinical nutrition, foodservice management, sales & marketing, research and public health/community nutrition. The 45-week internship experience provides a unique and broad spectrum of opportunities to fulfill the core competencies for dietetic interns, as established by the Accreditation Council for Education in Nutrition and Dietetics (ACEND).