Hazel Ng is an internationally acclaimed Registered Dietitian with over 20 years of Medical Nutrition Therapy experience in both inpatient and outpatient settings. She is dedicated to helping individuals achieve their health and nutritional goals.
She obtained her Bachelors of Science in Clinical Dietetics from the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), and her certification in Adult Weight Management through the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. She is also a Certified Diabetes Educator and a Certified Lactation Educator.
Upon graduating, Hazel worked as a Site Manager for the Women, Infant and Children’s (WIC) Program and as a Clinical Dietitian at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles (CHLA). In 2001, she returned to her native home, Hong Kong, to launch Diet Asia, the nation’s first multimedia weight loss consultation center. While in Hong Kong she also co-authored Weight Management Kit –a weight management book that has helped thousands of clients achieve and maintain their weight goal. After a successful 5 years in the industry, she returned to California to start her own nutrition practice.
She is currently the owner of SmartEaters and HRD Consulting Corp, practices with proven records in adult weight management, diabetes and other chronic disease management and bariatric surgery preparation. Aside from leading her team of nutritionist and administrative staff, Hazel works as the RD for Cerritos College and mentors dietetic student interns and college students.
Additionally, Hazel is an experienced public speaker fluent in English, Chinese Mandarin and Cantonese. Having been invited to participate in nutrition seminars in local churches, schools, health fair and private events, media interviews, she is an advocate of targeting behavioral changes within the community. She also maintains a bilingual blog that is featured in Jiaotong University SJTU-Bor S. Luh Food Safety Research Center’s website in Shanghai, China.
Catherine Ko, MS, RD, CDE
Catherine earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Biochemistry from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), and her Master’s of Science degree in Human Nutrition and Food Science from California Polytechnic University, Pomona (Cal Poly Pomona). The thesis of her graduate degree explored the effects that calcium supplements have on premenstrual syndrome. Her primary interests in nutrition lie in the fields of diabetes management, vegetarianism, and evidence-based research of nutritional science. She has been a member of SmartEater since 2015, and also became a Certified Diabetes Educator (CDE) in 2017. She strives to help clients manage or improve their own health through diet, using tools like motivational interviewing, and establishing realistic goals for each person’s current lifestyle.
In addition to clinical work, Catherine has been involved in seminars and presentations in various community settings, including Allied Pacific Wellness Center (Alhambra, City of Industry, Arcadia); Herald Cancer Association (Rowland Heights, Alhambra); Evangelical Formosan Church of Los Angeles (El Monte); Child Development Center (Cerritos); and various local health fairs.
Catherine speaks fluent English and Chinese. In her personal time, she enjoys being with her daughters, reading, gardening, and traveling.
Edna Portillo, CC, RD
Edna is our Spanish-speaking Dietitian who has been with the SmartEater Team since 2012. She obtained her Culinary Nutrition degree from Johnson and Wales University and is also a Certified Culinarian.
Ian Lei Chan (Dorothy), RD
Dorothy has a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Sciences from Cornell University, and obtained her professional internship training with California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She has valuable experiences in both clinical and outpatient settings with a diverse patient population covering different diseases and health issues. Dorothy is also experienced as a public speaker in leading nutrition seminars for various community events, wellness center, and health fairs.
Dorothy believes in food as medicine. Her philosophy in practice is to empower her clients with evidence-based food and nutrition knowledge and help them build healthy relationships with foods to achieve their health goals. She is multilingual in English, Mandarin, Cantonese, and Taiwanese. In her downtime, she enjoys cooking and exploring different recipes, playing the piano, and knitting.
Lian Liu, MPH, RD, CDE
Lian Liu is a well rounded Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator with over 10 years of experience from multiple settings, including but not limited to Academic Research, Hospital, Food Service Management, Outpatient, Community Health and Telehealth. She’s adventurous, entrepreneurial, innovative, and always seeking better ways to help her clients and patients achieve optimal health outcomes. Lian obtained her Master of Public Health degree at Loma Linda University. For the past 5 years, she has been working primarily as a Clinical Dietitian and Assistant Director in the largest Health Management Organization in California. She has extensive experience in ICU, CCU, NICU, pediatric, telemetry and meg/surge units. She was then promoted as Assistant Director to oversee food service operations and to lead a team of clinical dietitians. In accordance with her mission and vision, she decided to join Hazel’s team in June 2019 to help more people stay well and enjoy a better quality of life.
Lian is fluent in English and Mandarin. She enjoys reading and writing in both languages, she runs an educational blog on her own website and mini blog (Weibo) which has over 180k followers on Chinese Social Media. Lian is also in the process of developing online courses to reach more people who demand a more flexible learning experience. Her counseling style is approachable and patient-centered, she thrives to find sustainable methods that suit patients’ needs. She keeps herself abreast of new researches, trends, and guidelines. One of her hobbies is to keep on learning. She also enjoys spending time with family, trying new food and traveling.
Lisa Li, RDN
Lisa is a Registered Dietitian, Certified Lifestyle Coach, and multilingual in Cantonese Mandarin, English, and some Spanish. Lisa obtained her Bachelor of Science degree in Food and Nutrition from Cal Poly Pomona and completed her dietetic internship with Nutrition Ink. Through her internship, Lisa acquired valuable experience in community nutrition via her local WIC program and clinical experience in renal nutrition from DaVita. She has experience providing Medical Nutrition Therapy for an array of health issues throughout the lifespan. Lisa is passionate about teaching and counseling individuals through client centered learning and individualized goal setting. She enjoys utilizing other counseling techniques to supplement the learning/change process. She is in constant pursuit of knowledge and enjoys finding creative ways to facilitate personal growth/development and guide her clients toward their health goal. Lisa also appreciates any opportunity to learn from her peers, other health care professionals and fellow dietitians via research articles, podcasts, and seminars.
She loves learning about new foods, recipes and traditions from different cultures/religions to help enrich her cultural competency. In her down time, she enjoys hiking, reading, and sketching.
Administrative and Social Media Support
Erica Ueno, MPH
Erica earned her Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology from University of California, Riverside and has recently graduated from Loma Linda University with a Master's of Public Health Degree emphasizing in Nutrition and Dietetics. She also completed her internship program with Kaiser Fontana and Lewis-San Antonio Healthy Communities Institute. Erica became part of the Smarteater team in 2012 as a volunteer. After 6 months, she was hired to become the registered dietitian assistant and have since been promoted to office manager.
Erica has participated in a number of volunteer events and health fairs throughout her program and internship, as well as with the Smarteater team. She believes that community and individual education and wellness is an important aspect in preventing chronic diseases and future ailment. Therefore, Erica aspires to become a Registered Dietitian in order to continue in assisting and supporting individuals and those throughout the community in achieving a wholesome and healthy lifestyle.
Office Manager / Nutritionist
Vivian is a recent graduate from California State University, Los Angeles with a degree in Nutritional Science. Vivian helps with our front desk and other administrative duties. She hopes to become a registered dietitian in the future.
Veronica earned her bachelor’s degree in Foods in Nutrition, with an emphasis on dietetics, at California State University, Pomona. While working on her degree, she was also a member of the school’s Estudiante de Dietética program, which centers on the need for health and nutrition education within the hispanic community, as well as proper nutrition terminology in Spanish.
She has also worked hands-on within the community, volunteering as a health coach in San Antonio Regional Hospital’s Community Health Improvement Program for over two years. Here, she worked with patients after their discharge from the hospital, setting goals for to improve their lifestyles and monitoring their progress.
She aspires to join the field of dietetics as a registered dietitian, and combine her experience with her passion for health and fitness in order to improve the lives of others. In her free time, she enjoys being at the gym and outdoors, and loves finding new vegan recipes for her family to try.
Katie is studying Foods and Nutrition with an emphasis in Dietetics at California State Polytechnic University, Pomona. She aspires to become a registered dietitian to promote health and prevent chronic diseases through balanced nutrition. In addition, she has volunteered in the Department of Emergency Medicine at the Los Angeles County & USC Medical Center assisting health professionals and patients while observing surgical procedures. By working closely with dietitians and numerous healthcare professionals, Katie has come to realize that teamwork is vital for quality patient care. She is motivated to join the team of healthcare providers as a registered dietitian.
Rochelle Lai, MS, RD
Rochelle recently graduated with her Master's Degree in Nutrition, Healthspan, and Longevity and completed her Dietetic Internship at USC. She received her Bachelor's of Science in Nutritional Science, Dietetics with a minor in Molecular Toxicology at UC Berkeley. In her free time, you can find her practicing her calligraphy skills!
Interns and Volunteers
Valerie is currently a Food Science major who has great passion for dietetics and food science. She is one of our volunteers who take care of translation for Newsletters as well as several office duties.