About Our Gastrointestinal Program

CHKD offers medical nutrition therapy for a multitude of gastrointestinal (GI) disorders such as food allergies and intolerances, IBS, IBD – including Crohn’s and Colitis, and more. Our GI team includes several GI specialty doctors, registered dietitians, a pharmacist, and social workers. Ask your pediatrician about arranging a consultation with us to discuss the options and benefits of GI diet therapy and if it might be a fit for your child.

How the GI Tract Functions

Our GI tract starts working as soon as we see food – sometimes even as soon as we think about food (does your mouth water thinking about a delicious meal?) Once you take a bite of food, your salivary glands produce saliva to help lubricate and break down food. Your teeth and tongue also help break food down into a bolus ready to swallow. That bolus travels through your esophagus, and into your stomach where enzymes and stomach acid break down the food into smaller and smaller bits. Then it passes into your small intestine, mixing with other enzymes from your pancreas, liver, and gallbladder that further aid in digestion. What was once a delicious meal becomes broken down into nutrients that are absorbed in the small intestine, and all that’s left to pass through are electrolytes, water, and waste products. Most of the water is then absorbed in the large intestine and stool is left to be expelled from the body.

Dietitians as Part of Your GI Team

GI registered dietitians (RDs) are an essential part of the GI team and provide nutrition counseling and education for the following disorders:

  • Enteral and Parenteral Nutrition
  • Food Allergies
  • Gastroparesis
  • IBD
  • IBS
  • Short Bowel Syndrome
  • Celiac Disease
  • Failure to Thrive
  • Weight Loss
  • Eating Disorders
  • Eosinophilic Esophagitis
  • And more!

For More Information

Please call our dietitian line at (757) 668-8688 or our GI team at (757) 668-7416 with any questions.