Linking science to practice

Shelly Meltzer & Associates offer a complete package of dietary services for anyone who wants to optimise his or her diet in order to improve their health and performance. The practice focuses on delivering scientifically based solutions that link the science and practice of nutrition.

Our team of dietitians has a wealth of clinical and sports nutrition training and experience, which enables us to offer dietary interventions in order to treat clinical conditions and sports specific diets for recreational and elite athletes. We also keep abreast of scientific developments and maintain a close link with the UCT/MRC Research Unit for Exercise Science and Sports Medicine (ESSM) and the Division of Human Nutrition (Department of Human Biology) through teaching and research projects.

An exciting and dynamic addition to our dietary practice is the Trufood Station, which is located in the main foyer of the SSISA. Our dietitians work closely with the chefs to ensure a daily offering of healthy fresh foods that meet the specific requirements of all ages, stages and physical demands of its customers.

Our services include:

  • Nutritional support for all athletes in all phases of training and competition
  • Diets that are tailored to meet the individual's needs (based on a comprehensive assessment)
  • Menu coordination for teams, expeditions and adventure athletes travelling locally, and internationally
  •  Practical workshops for athletes and coaches
  • Nutrition interventions for wellness and corporate programmes. This includes workshops, shopping trips and cooking classes.
  • Education: course development for Allied Health professionals and chefs, the lay public and postgraduate students
  • Product development and consultation to the food industry on food labelling and legislation - and more specifically on marketing their products appropriately to target groups
  • The writing of articles, brochures and other nutrition educational material.

The dietitians 

The team of associates and consultant dietitians each bring to the practice many years of experience and expertise, thereby enabling the practice to offer a broad range of interventions.
Shelly Meltzer, who heads up the dietary practice at the SSISA, has over 25 years’ experience in clinical, sport and community nutrition. She has also collaborated on some exciting and unique contracts, such as:
  • Travelling on board a container ship to assess the dietary needs of seafarers for Safmarine Maersk
  • Organising the food services and interventions for the IRB Sevens Tournaments in George and Port Elizabeth (2008,2009, 2010;2011) and the ICC Six Nations Series in Namibia
  • Teaching many SA rugby and cricket players basic cooking skills
  • Serving as the consultant dietitian for Braam Malherbe and David Grier when they ran the Great Wall of China in 2006 and for Braam Malherbe when he participated in the Scott-Amundsen Centenary Race to the South Pole in 2012 
Shelly has also worked with many of South Africa’s national cricket, soccer, surfing, formula A1 racing drivers, Olympic athletes, the Shosholoza team and the SA Canoeing and SA Sevens team.
Since 1996 Shelly has been involved with SA Rugby on various levels, including serving on their Scientific & Medical Committee. She has also served on various other sporting and sports medicine bodies and was a board member of SA Institute for Drug Free Sport. Shelly manages a network of dietitians and content development for the ‘Making the Difference’ Woolworths Programme, which has included curriculum for children, parent talks and a tuck shop guide. Shelly also supervises postgraduate dietetic students at UCT and is a guest lecturer for the UCT/MRC Research Unit for ESSM.
She co-authored ‘Eating for Sport’, and has written many other book chapters, articles and manuals on sports nutrition, presenting locally and internationally on the topic. 

Karlien Smit joined the practice in 2007 and initially focused on the dietary services for the SSISA’s Healthy Weight, One to One and Corporate programmes. She then focused on her passion for sport and started working with individual athletes and teams - both recreational and elite. To date, Karlien has worked with the Nashua Cape Cobras, SA canoeing, SA under-16 rugby team, Cycling SA, and athletes participating in ultra endurance events such as the Cape Epic and Iron Man.

Karlien also presents workshops to a wide variety of groups, from athletes to corporate companies, students and the general public, and is a regular writer for popular magazines and newspapers such as Shape and Men’s Health. Karlien is currently based in Gauteng running the Gauteng branch of the practice.

Rowena Visagie recently joined the practice. She previously worked at the Kings Park Sports Medicine Centre in Durban and had her own private practice in Pietermaritzburg. She has a passion for sports nutrition and has worked with athletes and sports teams of various levels.  Most of her experience is with endurance and ultra-endurance sports (e.g. triathlon, ironman, mountain biking, cycling, canoeing, marathon and ultra-marathon running), U21 and schoolboy rugby, soccer, cricket, track and field, and swimming.  She is also a former national elite triathlete, and provincial swimmer, cross-country and track athlete. 
Sarah Chantler is a registered dietitian, working on several of the SSISA Programmes including the Healthy Weight ,Go-4-It Medical Executives and Maestroes programmes and also consults with individuals referred to the practice. Sarah qualified with Nutrition & Dietetics (UCT) in 2005 and completed the International Olympic Committee (IOC) post-graduate diploma course in sports nutrition in 2010. She is currently completing her master’s degree in exercise science at UCT. Sarah’s primary area of interest lies in the combination of exercise and diet, herself a waterpolo player, a previous provincial swimmer and UCT rower. 
Elienne Horwitz has been a dietitian on the SSISA’s Healthy Weight and One-2-One  and Go-4-It programmes since 2008. She also consults part-time for the private practice and has a special interest in weight management, general sports nutrition and chronic diseases of lifestyle.
Cecily Fuller has more than 25 years’ experience in different fields of nutrition and dietetics, including consulting to various food and other health-related industries. She has a special interest in the role that diet and exercise play in both the prevention and treatment of lifestyle-related diseases, such as: overweight, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes mellitus and cancer.
Cecily has made a significant contribution to the dietary practice over the years, given her integral involvement with many of the programmes and content development ranging from grass roots and school-based projects to nutrition manuals for elite athletes.
To date, Cecily has worked with South Africa’s Olympic athletes and ICC cricket, rugby and golf, and other sports codes. She has also been involved with student training and research projects as well as writing many advertorials, editorials and liaising with the food industry. Cecily has also co authored the book ‘Eating for Sport’.
Jenny-Ann Smuts’ association with the dietary practice over the past 10 years has provided her with a wealth of experience in both clinical and sports nutrition. Her current focus is on managing the Trufood Station. 


General queries and the Trufood Station

Contact Person: Shelly Meltzer
Phone: 021 659 5646
Fax: 021 659 5633

The Trufood Station

Contact Person: Jenny Ann Smuts
Phone: 021 6595646
Cell: 0828514214

Clinical and sports nutrition

Contact Person: Rowena Visagie
Phone: 021 6595660 / 0824257234
Fax: 021 6595633

Clinical and sports nutrition

Contact Person: Sarah Chantler
Phone: 021 659 5660 / 0822965838
Fax: 021 6595633

Clinical and sports nutrition

Contact Person: Elienne Horwitz
Phone: 021 6595646 
Fax: 021 6595633

Clinical and sports nutrition

Contact Person: Karlien Smit
Phone: 011 2349798
Cell: 0845879000