Nestlé Ghana has organised a nutrition workshop for media personalities in Ghana to commemorate World Milk Day and re-emphasize the “Goodness of milk at all stages of life”.
Themed: “Good Food, Health and Nutrition – Realising the Goodness of Milk at all Stages of Life”, the workshop exposed the media to the nutritional value of milk and the need to promote milk consumption at all stages of life.
Speaking to the media, Managing Director of Nestlé Ghana, Freda Duplan noted that Nestlé has a responsibility to engage stakeholders and share nutrition knowledge to help them make better food choices for their growth and wellbeing.
She added that Nestlé also supported government’s efforts to improving nutrition through public education and making milk affordable.
“As a Nutrition Health and Wellness Company, sharing nutrition knowledge is of paramount importance to us. It is in fulfilment of our Purpose of ‘Enhancing Quality of Life and Contributing to a Healthier Future’. As we commemorate World Milk Day, I reaffirm Nestlé’s commitment to micronutrient fortification and our ambition to help 50 million children lead healthier lives by 2030”.
Freda Duplan said in view of this, there is the need to empower journalists as partners in public education on healthy diet and quality food choices.
In his presentation on the importance of milk in everyday nutrition, Dr Nii Lante Amissah, Lecturer at the Department of Family and Consumer Sciences, University of Ghana noted that milk includes high quality protein and all the essential amino acids needed for growth for both children and adults.
He said: “We should promote milk consumption at all stages of life. Individuals should however, consume milk that is appropriate for them because as one grows older, it is important to have less saturated fat thus the need to take milk with less fat or skim milk”
He noted that many adults still avoid milk due to concerns about the fat content or the inconvenient effects of lactose intolerance, adding, however, that there were ways to mitigate these effects and still enjoy their nutritional benefits.
According to him, “Recent research has shown that children and adults with lactose intolerance can build up tolerance over time by regularly introducing small amounts of milk, which can slowly change their intestinal bacteria and make lactose easier to digest.”
Dr Amissah recommended a glass of milk a day, which is equivalent to 250 ml for adults and two glasses or more for children to build their bones and enhance their cognitive development.
He added that inadequate intake of nutrients such as calcium leads to weakening of the bones, increasing the risk of fractures later in life, particularly in women, and stunting, while deficiencies in others such as iron, vitamin A and iodine could further lead to low birth weight, still birth, weakened immune system and anaemia.
He therefore encouraged all gathered to regularly consume milk as it has the potential of preventing diseases such as osteoporosis in older persons.
As part of the Workshop, a ‘Milk Recipe Cooking Competition’ was organised to expose the media to ways by which milk can be incorporated in daily meals.
Nine reporters formed a team of three each and cooked to compete for special prizes from Nestlé. Lilipearl Baaba Otoo of the Business and Financial Times, Michael Abayateye of the Ghanaian Times and Christabel Addo of the Ghana News Agency emerged the overall Best Team of the competition. They walked away with hampers full of Nestlé products and a rice cooker each.