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The Team

Vergelegen Dietetic Consultants Somerset West

We have offered a high standard of dietetic care for over 20 years in the Helderberg and Winelands regions.

Our Consultants


Marlene Ellmer
Marlene has been in private practice for 10 years and sees a variety of patients at the practice in Arun Place and virtually. Marlene is the owner of Vergelegen Dietitians and she supports the dietitians working in the hospital over weekends and public holidays.

Marlene graduated from Stellenbosch University in 2002. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Nutrition in 2006. She spent 8 years in the United Kingdom mainly specialising in gut disorders and paediatrics. She worked for 5 years at the world-renowned Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children in London where she dealt with gastroenterology, gut surgery, neonatology, cardiology and critically ill children and infants. She returned to South African in 2014 and became the owner of Vergelegen Dietitians. She recently embarked on the journey of Nutrigenomics and Nutrigenetics and educated herself on impact of genetics on nutrition, health and disease.

Marlene specialises in women’s health, paediatrics, gut disorders, allergies and nutrigenetics (genetic testing).

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Leanie Huxham
Leanie Huxham is our lead clinical dietitian for the hospital, ICU’s and critically ill patients as well as oncology (cancer) patients. She has also a keen interest in children with developmental disabilities.

Leanie graduated from the University of Stellenbosch in 2003. She then completed a diploma in Psychology in the United Kingdom and furthered her dietetic studies by graduating with a Master degree in nutrition in 2012. Having worked in the UK for 12 years, Leanie gained valuable experience in various areas of dietetics. She worked in private practice at the world-renowned Harley street in London, where she treated patients with chronic lifestyle diseases, gut disorders, and women’s health. She returned to South Africa in 2016 when she joined our team as a clinical dietitian.

Leanie specializes in critically ill patients, oncology, peadiatric developmental disabilities.

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Megan Donald
Megan work’s alongside Leanie in Vergelegen Mediclinic by being responsible for the surgical, medical and renal patients on ward level. She also sees practice patients in the rooms.

Megan joined our team in 2020 amidst the Covid-19 pandemic under difficult circumstances and did an excellent job to support our team.

Megan graduated from the University of Stellenbosch in 2018. She then moved on to complete Community Service at Queen Nandi Regional Hospital in KwaZulu-Natal. She was working in the areas of paediatrics, oncology and diabetes.

Megan specialises in diabetes, surgical patients, kidney disease and has a keen interest in sport’s nutrition.

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Marguerite Loftus
Marguerite joined the Vergelegen Dietitians Team in 2021. Marguerite is the clinical dietitian for Busamed Paardevlei Private Hospital and also sees patients at the practice.

Marguerite is a passionate dietitian who believes in taking a holistic, patient directed approach. This is enforced with the tertiary qualifications she achieved, namely BSc Human Life Science with Physiology (Cum Laude) (US); BSocScience (Honours) in Psychology (UCT) and BSc Dietetics (Cum Laude) (US).

After graduation, Marguerite completed her community service year at Tygerberg Hospital, working predominantly in oncology and paediatrics. As a registered dietitian, Marguerite has worked as an associated lecture at the Division of Human Nutrition, Stellenbosch University, where she facilitated undergraduate clinical training as well as lectured several therapeutic nutrition undergraduate topics.

Marguerite specialises in geriatric nutrition, cardiac disease, home tube feeding, and oncology. She also completed a course in Nutrigenetics and Nutrigenomics, and will be assisting Marlene with genetic test interpretation.

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Our Administrative Team


Natalie Kretzschmar: Administrative assistant
Natalie is the perfectionist and helps to run a well-oiled machine. She has a great eye for detail and is meticulous and diligent in her work. She is responsible for generating patient reports and doctor’s correspondence with our doctors and multi-disciplinary team. She also supports the rest of the admin team with their duties.
Tracey Fransman: Account Manager
Tracy has been with the practice for many years and is well known to many of our regular clients. She is responsible for the administration of practice accounts and medical aids. She is also in charge of stock purchases and orders. She helps out in the afternoon at reception. Tracy continues to deliver an outstanding service and is the link that ties the practice together.
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