Ph.D. (Nutrition and Food Sciences), Utah State University
M.Sc. (Nutrition and Food Sciences), Utah State University
B.Sc. (Biology) Utah State University
Research and Scholarly Interests
For the past 27 years, I have been developing dairy products containing probiotics,
living bacteria that can be beneficial to human health by helping to treat and prevent
In collaboration with scientists at the Canadian Research and Development Centre for
Probiotics at Lawson Health Research Institute, we have developed a probiotic yogurt
containing microorganisms effective in treating and preventing urogenital infections
I have trained more than sixty interns for Western Heads East Project (http://www.westernheadseast.ca) which have helped to create a sustainable mini-dairy plant in an outlying community
of Mwanza, Tanzania. The interns have educated the community about the health benefits and preparation
of probiotic yogurt. This project has been recently expanded to Kenya in Africa.
Our probiotic yogurt has the potential to act as a natural remedy that could lessen
the severity of diseases and diarrheal symptoms in the region by interrupting infection
cycles and killing harmful bacteria and viruses.
Food and Nutrition 9222A/B – Research Methodology and Statistics
Dean’s Honor Roll of Teaching, 2000–2009, Brescia University College
Food and Nutrition 2132A/B – Introduction to Foods
Food and Nutrition 2232 – Principle of Food Sciences
Food and Nutrition 3342A/B – Advanced Food Sciences
Food and Nutrition 4452A/B – Experimental Foods
Human Ecology 4402A/B – Supervised Research
Brescia University College Award for Excellence in Teaching, 2006
Representative Publications and Presentations
El Hassan, D. and Hekmat, S. 2012. Dietary acculturation of Arab immigrants in the
Greater Toronto Area. J. Diet Prac Res. 73(3):2–5.
Hemsworth, J., S. Hekmat, and G. Reid. 2012. Micronutrient supplemented probiotic
yogurt for HIV-infected adults taking HAART in London, Canada. J. Gut Microbes. 3(5):1–6.
Whaling, M.A., I. Luginaah, G. Reid, S. Hekmat, et.al. 2012. Perceptions about probiotic
yogurt for health and nutrition in the context of HIV/AIDS in Mwanza, Tanzania. J.
Health Population Nutrition. 30(1): 31–40.
Cimo, A., S. Hekmat, and E. Lui. 2012. Manufacturing probiotic yogurt fortified with
ginseng and examining effects on vascular health. Cultivating Natural Bioactives for
Health and Disease Conference. (First Prize on Poster Competition).
Ayres, J., J. Theurer, S. Hekmat, et.al. 2012. Assessment of Dysphagia knowledge and
confidence in skills among undergraduate nutrition students in London, Ontario. CASLPA
Hekmat, S.et.al. 2012. Measuring the survival rate of Lactobacillus rhamnosus GR-1
in Ginseng fortified milk. CIFST conference presentation.
Morgan, K. and S. Hekmat. 2012. Sensory evaluation of Locally grown fruit purees and
inulin fiber on probiotic yogurt in Mwanza, Tanzania and the Microbial Analysis of
M. oleifera fortified probiotic yogurt. J. Food and Nutritional Sciences (In Preparation).
Irvine, S., R. Hummelen, and S. Hekmat. 2011. Probiotic yogurt consumption may improve
gastrointestinal symptoms, productivity and nutritional intake of people living with
human immunodeficiency virus in Mwanza, Tanzania. J. Nut. Res. 31: 875–881.
My philosophy of teaching is to create interest in the classroom and to involve students
with the subject matter. I incorporate a variety of teaching methods in my classes
such as lectures, individual and/or group presentations, independent projects, class
discussion and related audio-visual presentations.
I teach various undergraduate and graduate courses in Food and Nutritional Sciences.
These courses include laboratory components in which students find the opportunity
to apply what they have learned in the class and to perform hands-on experiments.
This hand-on approach would help students to better understand difficult theoretical
or scientific principles.
Other Noteworthy Achievements
2011 Schulich School of Medicine & Dentistry’s Dean’s Award of Excellence – Team Award