Monday, September 20, 2010

College students are losing weight for credit

There's a story on the Chronicle of Higher Education titled, "On Campus and Online, Students Lose Weight for Credit." (To read the full article, you need a subscription). The story has a photo (shown on the right) with the following description:
Katherine Culbreath takes notes in the "Principles of Weight Management" course at the U. of Texas at San Antonio. Students with both personal and professional motivations have enrolled.
Does that person in the photo appear to have a weight management problem? (then again, perhaps this student has lost weight because of the course and now appears to have a healthier weight) What if the wrong type of students are enrolling in weight management classes? We already have a huge public health problem with eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia. Let's hope they're not enrolling in these courses unless the courses are also teaching about eating disorders and the health dangers of being too thin.

I think it's great to see colleges promoting healthy weight management courses and allowing overweight students to receive college credit as they lose weight.  There's even been some discussion about making such courses mandatory for certain students, but that still remains highly controversial.

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