Authorities ask pilgrims to take care of their health
More than 4,000 pilgrims from the UAE will join millions of Muslims around the world in Saudi Arabia.
Abu Dhabi - Authorities said the pilgrims' food packages should mainly contain low-risk foods that can be stored at room temperature and don't require refrigeration for storage.
Published: Thu 10 Aug 2017, 7:54 PM
Last updated: Thu 10 Aug 2017, 10:00 PM
The UAE pilgrims have been told to ensure that they eat healthy food, drink a lot of water and to avoid buying foodstuff from unreliable outlets during the forthcoming Haj rituals in Mecca.
The Abu Dhabi Food Control Authority (ADFCA), through its social media sites, launched a campaign entitled "Your Food Safety in Haj", which includes food tips for the pilgrims, urging them to get food from reliable and well-known outlets, and to avoid unhygienic restaurants.
Haj will take place this year between August 30 until September 4. More than 4,000 pilgrims from the UAE will join millions of Muslims around the world in Saudi Arabia.
According to the ADFCA, the period spent by pilgrims in the Hajj rituals is very short and doesn't exceed two weeks; therefore, the pilgrims should consider selecting good and healthy food that will help them in performing Haj rituals easily without getting digestion disorders.
Authorities said the pilgrims' food packages should mainly contain low-risk foods that can be stored at room temperature and don't require refrigeration for storage, for example honey, tuna, canned natural juices, and other canned food and dry foodstuff to avoid food poisoning.
It is recommended for pilgrims to eat energy giving food that would keep their bodies strong and to drink a lot of water or juices to avoid dehydration as they might spend long hours under the direct hit of the sun.
People have also been warned about the risks of drinking water from the public taps provided for all pilgrims due to healthy and safety uncertainties like getting flu or cough as different people are using the facilities.
Pilgrims have been told about the need to prepare food in small quantities just enough for a day's meal to avoid wastage or throwing away of the remaining food because of the lack of proper food storage facilities in some places while performing the Haj rituals.
The food control authorities also urged pilgrims to eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables rich in vitamins, mineral salts and natural fibres to prevent cases of constipation, and to avoid buying foodstuffs from street vendors who are so common during the Haj period.
Authorities warned that many of the street vendors selling foodstuffs on the sidewalks in Mecca don't comply with the requirements of food hygiene in preparation and storage.
Pilgrims have also been advised to always wash their hands thoroughly with soap and water before and after eating food and after visiting the toilets, to eat food in clean dishes and to dispose them off after use.
People were also reminded about the need to check the expiry dates of all food products before buying or eating them.
Pilgrims have been told not to eat any food stuff with a suspicious texture or taste. If they get abnormal symptoms of vomiting, diarrhea and fever, it might be a sign of food poisoning, and it is necessary to quickly visit a nearest medical centre to check the causes of the symptoms.
Tips given to Haj pilgrims> Have food from reliable and well-known outlets
> Food packages should contain low-risk foods that can be stored at room temperature
> Do not drink water from the public taps
> Prepare food in small quantities just enough for a day's meal
> Eat plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables rich in vitamins, mineral salts and natural fibres
> Avoid buying foodstuffs from illegal street vendors
> Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water before and after eating food and after visiting the toilets
> Eat food in clean dishes and dispose them after use
> Check the expiry dates of food products before buying or eating them
> Do not to eat any foodstuff with a suspicious texture or taste
> If symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea, and fever occur, quickly seek medical assistance