SHARJAH: On the occasion of World Food Safety Day, which is celebrated on 7 June every year, the Health Promotion Department, HPD, at the Supreme Council for Family Affairs in Sharjah, has recently launched the Virtual Nutrition Counseling Program along with the first electronic version of the booklet “Food Safety & Preservation”.
The move comes as part of the HPD’s eagerness to enhance the principles of food safety among society members and to spread healthy practices in dealing with food, as well as to develop sustainable solutions to health challenges.
The HPD urged the community members to take advantage of the free-of-charge Nutrition Counseling program which is available at the Department’s website, pointing out that users can fill out the e-form to set an online appointment with one of the HPD nutritionists.
The new program allows individuals to adopt healthy lifestyles to protect themselves from chronic diseases and boost their immunity, in light of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Her Excellency Iman Rashid Saif, HPD Director, said: “We always strive to maintain people’s health and to raise their health awareness, by launching educational programs in innovative and advanced ways to convey our message to a large segment of society, taking advantage of the cutting-edge digital infrastructure of Sharjah.”
“The HPD, under the patronage of Her Highness Sheikha Jawaher Bint Mohammed Al Qasimi, Wife of His Highness the Ruler of Sharjah and Chairperson of the Supreme Council for Family Affairs and with the efforts of its staff and volunteers is keen to improve the health-related behaviors of all society members, by providing them with the appropriate information, checkups, and consultations, as this would help enhance the public health and prevent diseases.”
“The Nutrition Counseling Program is one of a series of new communication channels with community members through modern communication technology. Our aim to provide them with tips about the importance of food safety and its impact on the public health, as well as to respond to their queries by nutritionists who will guide them to maintain food safety and protect it from contamination, as well as to promote daily nutritional behaviors and to maintaina healthy weight and integrated food, thus achieving a comprehensive nutritional lifestyle,”
She concluded that the new services, including the nutrition counseling program and the food safety booklet, aim to turn the culture of healthy food into a community approach, in addition to strengthening the role of the family in adopting behaviors that guarantee food preservation, such as personal hygiene and regular sterilization.
Food Safety & Preservation booklet
The first e-version of the “Food Safety & Preservation” booklet includes awareness-raising tips about how to identify spoiled food and also how to read the nutrition facts label through various illustrative models. The booklet also highlights the right methods to preserve food and how to ensure the safety of bottled water, as well as how to preserve children’s food.
The booklet contains a special section for providing tips about food purchase, including the benefits of purchasing grocery items weekly instead of purchasing it monthly, the importance of writing down the purchasing items in advance to avoid random buying during the shopping process, as random selection negatively affects the individual’s health and economic side. It also urges community members to read the nutrition facts label and make sure that it is accurate and placed correctly to know the nutritional value of items and how to store them properly.