The Faculty of Nursing and Health Sciences (FNHS), Notre Dame University-Louaize (NDU), organized on November 24, 2017, a series of capacity building workshops under the title, “Food, Nutrition, and Health,” which targeted high school students from different Lebanese schools.
This series of training about food, nutrition and health equipped high school students (Grade 11 and 12) with the essentials of managing their own health at different levels.
Assistant Professor at the FNHS Dr. Layal Karam conducted the first workshop on “How to Create a New Food Product.” She said, “Product development is the Oxygen that keeps the products and companies alive”. To be profitable and to survive, food companies seek new products and innovation. "Food is inseparable from the imagination".
This workshop focused on:
- What is a new food product?
- What are the different types of new product?
- Why do companies need to develop new food products?
- How does a successful new product get created?
- Case Study: Invited speaker from Gandour Company.
Gandour Marketing Manager Jawad Kanso added, “At Gandour, as a leading FMCG (fast moving consumer goods) we believe in the product development till the extend of embedding it to be one of the company’s core value through continuous development for the universe product, customer, consumer in a best way to add real value to our people.”
In 2006, almost 105,000 new food and drink products were launched globally (Rowan 2007). That’s around 300 for every day of the year! It is estimated, however, that only 5%, or about 5,250, will succeed. It takes a product development team and several key steps to create a successful new product.
During the second workshop, part-time faculty member Dr. Khalil Badaoui described “The Essentials of Sports Nutrition.” According to him, sports nutrition is the application of nutrition knowledge to a practical daily eating plan, focusing on:
- Providing the fuel for physical activity;
- Facilitating the repair, rebuilding, and adaptation process following hard physical work;
- Optimizing athletic performance in competitive events;
- Promoting overall health and wellness; and
- Designing practical dietary strategies to achieve these goals.
Achieving peak performance requires that athletes understand and implement the fundamental principles of sports nutrition and exercise science for a particular sport. Athletes should consume high-carbohydrate snacks, low in fat and protein, 30-60 minutes before practice and every 60 minutes for high endurance competition. They have also to drink 1-2 cups of water every 15 minutes.
Dr. Badaoui said, “Athletes should not use any nutritional supplement without medical and nutritional supervision.”
The third workshop titled, “Essentials of Adolescent Blood Donation in collaboration with Donner Sang Compter (DSC),” was intended to provide high school students with an introduction and awareness to the blood donation process. For her part, lecturer Najwa el-Gerges gave an overview of blood formation, components, blood cells functions, blood types, and life cycle in general; focus was on blood donation, eligibility criteria for donation, and population at risk who needs blood and how to recruit it. Moreover, Ms. Samar Merhi introduced to students blood groups determination and performed to participants from different schools a blood test to identify their blood types.
Faculty members taught students to recognize the benefits of blood donation, why to give blood, to protect themselves from unhealthy behaviors, by using different teaching methodologies, such as interactive presentations, videos, PPT, concept map, demonstrations, lucky draw, Q&A, and large group activity. The following topics were discussed:
- “Essentials of Adolescent Blood Donation” presented by El-Gerges;
- “Blood Typing” presented by Samar Merhi; and
- “Donner Sang Compter” presented by Abdo Saad.
El-Gerges concluded the workshops by saying, “Blood donation costs nothing but it saves a life!” She added that the benefits for blood donors are extended to social and community service and also protect the donor from many health risks.
A “Certificate of Attendance” was given to attending students.