Our Team’s Expertise
Collectively, our team has expertise in nutrition and lifestyle modification for:
- Diabetes and other chronic conditions
- Weight loss management
- Medication management
Our team can work with your primary care provider or specialist if appropriate to ensure that every aspect of your health is taken into account as we help you reach your weight loss and lifestyle modification goals.
Nicholas Fiacco, MD
He completed medical training at Mercer University School of Medicine and went on to Internal Medicine training at the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. In his time as an internist providing primary care, he recognized weight as a primary problem driving many patients’ health concerns. Always eager to improve, he completed training and certification in obesity medicine. This training required high-level exposure to endocrinology problems, and once again, Dr. Fiacco pursued further training in endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Learn more about Dr. Fiacco
Richard Henderson, MD, Ph.D
Dr Richard Henderson, M.D., Ph.D., is Director of the Continuous Quality Improvement Program at LifeStyle Medical Centers. He leads our on-going efforts to monitor and improve the quality and value of the care we provide, often utilizing clinical outcomes data from hundreds, and sometimes thousands of patients. In addition to his M.D. degree, he also has a Ph.D. degree in Physiology, both from the University of Chicago. In his 32-year career as a physician at UNC Hospitals and faculty member in the UNC School of Medicine he gained extensive experience in clinical research, and has nearly 100 publications in medical journals. He is a long-time advocate for lifestyle medicine, firmly believing that lifestyle choices are hugely important keys to one’s health and well-being.
Carey Amato, PA
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Carey Amato is a certified Physician Assistant with a background in Physical Medicine, Orthopedics, Pain Management, and Obesity Medicine. Carey earned her bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington in Physical Education and Health with a concentration in Exercise Science. She then earned a master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies from the Medical University of South Carolina. She is currently pursuing her Doctorate of Medical Science at A.T. Still University. Carey enjoys practicing medicine that works to reduce the risk of chronic diseases. She also believes in patient education and empowering patients to play an active role in their own healthcare. Carey enjoys coaching gymnastics and caring for her three children in her spare time.
Katie Godin, RD, LDN, MS
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Katie was born and raised in Aberdeen, North Carolina. She came to Raleigh, NC to complete her undergraduate education at Meredith College where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Foods and Nutrition. She went on to complete her Dietetic Internship at North Carolina Central University and began her career in Dietetics in 2007.
Brandi Crosson, RD, LDN
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Brandi grew up in IL and moved to NC in 2010. She worked in restaurant management for over a decade before deciding to begin a career in nutrition, after experiencing the profound effect proper nutrition had on her own health. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from North Carolina Central with a BS in Family and Consumer Sciences-Nutrition & Dietetics and completed her dietetic internship there as well. She is currently finishing her Master’s degree at NCCU in Nutritional Sciences. Her specialties include weight management, metabolic disorders, hormonal disorders, and autoimmune disease. Brandi believes in taking a functional approach in helping her patients to manage chronic conditions, weight, and preventative healthcare. Having personal experience with metabolic and autoimmune diseases, Brandi is passionate about helping others with these conditions. In her free time, Brandi enjoys traveling, reading, baking, yoga, and spending time with her family.
Sadaf Baig, MS, RDN, LDN
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Sadaf Baig was born and raised in Queens, NY. In her teen years, she moved to Long Island, NY with her family where she attended High School and College. She received her B.S. in Psychology and M.S. in Healthcare Policy and Management from Stony Brook University.
Sadaf worked in Mental Health Care for over a decade and then decided to pursue a career in Nutrition & Dietetics after experiencing the profound effects nutrition had played a role in her own health. She quickly developed a passion for Nutrition and its importance, which compelled her to go back to college and pursue her degree in Nutrition & Dietetics from Queens College.
Sadaf takes a functional and integrative approach to helping her patients with health promotion, managing chronic disease and weight management. She truly enjoys seeing her patients improve their quality of life by reaching their health goals through sustainable lifestyle changes.
Sadaf has an adventurous spirit and in her free time loves exploring new foods and restaurants, traveling, yoga, weightlifting and theme parks to name a few things.
Courtney Woodside, RD, LDN
As a North Carolina native, Courtney has enjoyed living in many parts of the state. She grew up near Pinehurst, and after high school, moved to Boone, where she attended Appalachian State University. In 2011, she completed her Bachelors of Exercise Science- it was here that she became fascinated with nutrition.
With the new aspiration of becoming a dietitian, Courtney moved to Chapel Hill, and completed the combined Masters of Public Health- Registered Dietitian program in December 2013.
For over 7 years, she worked as an RD in an obesity medicine practice, emphasizing optimizing metabolism and fat loss via diet and prescription medications. Having struggled with her weight throughout her adolescent years, Courtney has genuine empathy and passion to help others.
Her specialties include high protein, low carb, and ketogenic diets, as well as intermittent fasting.
Laura Harkins RDN, LDN
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After graduating from Framingham State University with a B.S. in Food and Nutrition, Laura moved to North Carolina to complete her dietetic internship and begin her career as a Registered Dietitian. Laura has experience in weight management, integrative and functional nutrition, eating disorders, food allergies and sensitivities, infant nutrition, and thyroid disorders. Food and nutrition became an important part of her life when she realized its essential role in disease prevention and intervention. She loves working one-on-one with clients and empowering them to make healthy eating a natural and sustainable part of their daily lives. She believes that healthy food can be personalized to work its magic on everyone. In her free time, Laura enjoys reading, experimenting with new recipes, and going for hikes with her fiancé and dog.
Alison Licquia, RD, LDN, MS
Ali was born and raised in upstate New York and grew up on every kind of sports field imaginable. That love of all things sports carried over into college, where she was a member of the University of Connecticut Women’s Rowing team while she completed her Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Science. After undergrad, she completed her Dietetic Internship and Master’s Degree at The State University of New York at Buffalo and quickly fled to Florida after graduation, leaving snowy winters behind.
Kim Lee, MS, RD, LDN
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Kim was born and raised in Naperville, IL. She attended Saint Louis University in St. Louis, MO, for undergrad, receiving her Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics. She stayed at Saint Louis University to complete her Dietetic Internship and then finished her Master of Science in Dietetics through Kansas State University.
Hannah Brewer, MS, RD, LDN
Hannah was born and raised in Raleigh, NC. She received a Bachelor of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics from North Carolina Central University and continued here for her Dietetic Internship and Master of Science in Nutritional Sciences. As a Dietitian, she aims to assist patients in achieving optimal living and desired weight loss through whole foods-based eating patterns, active lifestyles, and individual well-being. She is a strong believer that all things can exist in moderation—including food! When not at work, she enjoys yoga, hiking, nature documentaries, and snuggling with her mini goldendoodle.
Rita Langworth-Brewer, PA-C, DFAAPA
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Rita Langworth-Brewer pursued her passion for Medicine by receiving a Bachelor’s Degree in Biology from the State University of NY@ Geneseo, followed by the Weill Cornell Surgical Physician Assistant Program in Manhattan, NY. Over the past thirty years, she has worked in hospitals, private practices, and outpatient clinics specializing in Internal Medicine, Surgery, Weight loss, and Integrative Medicine.
She is a Distinguished Fellow of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, a Certified Diplomate of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, and the Founder & Leader of the Healthy Lifestyles Ministry at Raleigh North Christian Center in Raleigh, North Carolina.
After seeing thousands of patients suffering from the devastating effects of preventable chronic diseases, her mission became educating, equipping, and empowering men and women around the world with the tools they need to reclaim their optimum health.
Her greatest joy is helping her patients and clients not only look and feel great by achieving their weight loss goals but to help them improve their chronic illnesses and reduce the need for prescription drugs.
Makayla Downs, MSN, FNP
Makayla Downs is a board-certified Family Nurse Practitioner who has experience in primary care, specifically with a focus on women’s health. Makayla has a bachelor’s degree in Nursing from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville along with a master’s degree in nursing from the University of St. Francis-Joliet.
Throughout her career as a nurse and Nurse Practitioner, she has worked with veterans and active-duty service members on a Medical-Surgical unit serving as charge nurse, done pediatric and adult telephone triage, and treated women in a GYN/primary care clinic that did clinical research as well. She brings her GYN background to LMC and is able to offer hormone testing to her female patients but also to her male patients (hello cortisol, I’m thinking of you!). She specifically helps women understand how hormones work in the body and the changes their body may be going through, particularly during the perimenopause and menopause years.
Makayla has a passion for finding the root cause to a health concern and working with her patients where they are at in their health journey. She believes in non-judgmental, mindful care and can provide accountability and support for her patients. Her goal is to help make lifestyle recommendations that are sustainable and individualized. She believes that the care she provides at Lifestyle Medical Center is not only about considering nutrition but also sleep, mental health, activity, family, etc. and with her work and life experience she is able to help patients meet their goals.
In her spare time, Makayla is the mother to 4 young children and enjoys volunteering in the local community, trying new restaurants, and listening podcasts and audiobooks.
Sherrie Stapleton, PA-C
Board-certified Physician Assistant with over 12 years of experience in fields including Internal Medicine, Endocrinology (Diabetes and Thyroid disorders), and ENT. Over 5 years was spent working at Joslin Diabetes Center in Syracuse, NY, helping patients with both insulin dependent, and non-insulin dependent diabetes improve control of their condition, and enhance their overall health and well-being.
She achieved Bachelor and Masters Degrees from Boston University specializing in Exercise Science and Nutrition. For five years she worked in the Fitness Industry as a Personal Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor, and Assistant Fitness Director. In 2009 she received her degree in Physician Assistant Studies from Le Moyne College in Syracuse, NY.
Promoting a healthy lifestyle to prevent adverse health has always been a passion of hers. Working with other providers, health departments, and local organizations, she developed and implemented health education programs, improving the health and well-being of her patients and community. Her goal is to provide others with the education and resources needed to help regain control over their health; reduce the adverse effects of chronic illness; and to reduce the reliance on prescription medications.