May 27, 2016

Dr. Kiyah Duffey (left) poses with her children. (Contributed photo)

Dr. Kiyah Duffey (left) poses with her children. (Contributed photo)

Together with Lisa Sutherland, PhD, a fellow alumna of the Gillings School’s nutrition department, Duffey founded a company that aims to promote healthy lifestyles for families.

Announcing… Kizingo!

The company’s flagship product is a toddler spoon that helps children succeed at self-feeding. The idea for the spoon originated during Duffey’s years at the Gillings School.

In 2009, she completed her doctoral studies with adviser Barry Popkin, PhD, W.R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of nutrition. Together, they examined the relationship between diet and long-term health outcomes in adults. When Duffey began raising her family, she realized she would have more impact by focusing on children’s eating habits, as childhood is when adult patterns become ingrained.

These days, Duffey writes for a number of blogs and websites, including Mind Positive Parenting and Smart Eating for Kids, translating the latest nutrition science related to feeding young children. She also has founded Kiyah J. Duffey Consulting, which focuses on policy research that improves the health and well-being of children, their parents and caregivers.

“My vision,” she says, “is a world in which families are empowered to make food-related decisions that promote the health of the environment, their communities and their relationships. And we are doing this [at Kizingo] — one product at a time!”

This story originally was published in the Spring 2016 edition of Carolina Public Health Magazine.


Gillings School of Global Public Health contact: David Pesci, director of communications, (919) 962-2600 or

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