Alcohol Harm Reduction in Lebanon: The Context, the Industry, and the Young Consumer; The Role of Islam in Public Health Policy on Smoking Cessation

17 Nov 2021


*Promoted by the University of Pittsburgh*

Speakers: Lilian Ghandour, Peter Walton

Description: Alcohol harm reduction in Lebanon: The Context, the iIndustry and the Young Consumer
Alcohol is a recognized global public health and sustainable development issue. The Arab world includes 22 diverse countries stretching from North Africa to Western Asia having varying dispositions with regards to alcohol sale and consumption. The talk will summarize the state of alcohol use research in the Arab world, and its implications; describe the experiences/views of Arab adolescents with regards to behavioral and structural determinants of underage drinking; and discuss effective harm reduction strategies and key implementation considerations.
The Role of Islam in Public Health Policy on Smoking Cessation
In the WHO Eastern Mediterranean Regional Office some 14 years ago, a ‘religiously inspired approach’ was proposed to combat tobacco use. This promoted a useful debate in the region. The purpose of this talk is to argue the need to identify the role which Islamic beliefs and teachings play (1) in influencing individual motivation to quit smoking and (2) in gaining support for public policies to reduce smoking. Ramadan and Hajj are taken as key points. These, it is argued, are times when Muslim religious motivation to abstain from smoking is strongest. I will suggest that the evidence base is not strong enough to adopt such an approach, which would be unique to this region. Rather, all of civil society, including Muslim religious authorities, should support the efforts of health professionals to encourage smoking cessation.

Event Date: 
Wednesday, November 17, 2021 - 2:00pm
Sponsored By: 
The University of Michigan’s Center for Middle East and North African Studies