25 WORLD GASTROENTEROLOGY NEWS JULY 2016 Editorial | Expert Point of View | Gastro 2016: EGHS-WGO | WDHD News | WGO & WGOF News | WGO Global Guidelines | Calendar of Events The Emirates World Digestive Health Day 2016: A Success Story Ali Al Fazari, MBBS, FRCPC, FACP Assistant Professor and Consultant Gastroenterologist College of Medicine and Health Sciences United Arab Emirates University Al Ain, UAE To mark World Digestive Health Day 2016, the Emirates Digestive Diseases Group at the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emir-ates University, organized a public awareness exhibition at one of the largest shopping malls in the city of Al Ain, UAE. Dr. Ali Al Fazari, Director of the Emirates Digestive Diseases Group, along with dignitaries from the Col-lege of Medicine, Health Authority Abu Dhabi, opened the activities at Hili Mall. The World Digestive Health Day 2016’s theme was “Diet and the Gut” and the Emirates’ ex-hibit featured six exhibits with posters covering six thematic topics. Dr. Al Fazari stated that “The UAE joins the world on this global awareness day which emphasizes the relationship between what we eat and gastrointestinal symptoms. We hope that our visitors will receive appropri-ate dietary and lifestyle advice and guidance to appropriate work up and treatment of their digestive symp-toms.” Dr. Amnah Alhanaee, Vice Chair-person of the Organizing Team, stated that the topics covered in the various exhibits directly relate to people’s daily concerns, such as food allergy and intolerance, gluten free food for celiac disease, lactose intolerance, reflux dis-ease, inflammatory bowel disease, and probiotics.” Dr. Alhanaee also added: “we created an exhibit for colon can-cer and diet which was a last minute decision, but was well appreciated by our visitors.” Ms. Shamsa Lootah, Organizing Team Leader and Chair of the Stu-dent Health Promotion Committee at the College of Medicine and Health Sciences, United Arab Emirates University, highlighted the role of the many volunteering medical students and young doctors who joined the awareness event and interacted with the public. Ms. Lootah said that there was more than 700 visitors to the event, mainly families. Dr. Al Fazari concluded: “I am pleased to see so many people have so many interesting questions about their diet and digestive health. I am also thankful to the organizing teams and volunteers who made us all proud this evening.” Dr. Budoor explains to a mall visitor about food allergies. Kids enjoyed solving diet and gut quiz. Dr. Khalid discusses celiac disease symp-toms with a mall visitor. The event visitors also enjoyed lucky draws and interactive quiz ses-sions focusing on information learned from the exhibits. Kids enjoyed drawing their own impressions and imaginations of a healthy gut on the whiteboard while their parents were busy in discussion with the medical students and doctors. Visitors left very encouraging com-ments of appreciation and thanks in the event guestbook and wished to stay tuned for our event next year.
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