SHANGHAI – A Chinese university has launched a program to fight obesity among its students, Chinese state news agency Xinhua reported Tuesday.
The program, offered by Nanjing Agricultural University in Jiangsu Province, where according to data recorded between 2013 and 2014 around 13 percent of students were obese, aims to encourage students to shed their excess weight and adopt a healthier lifestyle.
“We use mobile apps to record daily food intake,” said a student, who refused to give her real name.
According to Zhou Quanfu, one of the teachers, 60 percent of a student’s grade will be determined by the weight they lose, and to pass the course, the students would have to lose at least 7 percent of their original weight.
As part of the program, students are required to run on treadmills in the school’s fitness room, walk 10 kilometers (6.2 miles) two days a week and accompany a teacher on mountain hikes once a week.
The students are also required to send photos of their food through a mobile application to nutritionists to be advised on the calorie content.
Zhou said only students with more than 30 percent body fat or a body mass index of over 28 can sign up for the program.
However, Zhou did not confirm if the course was part of a degree program or an extracurricular activity.