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Shanghai helps its obese students lose weight
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Unhealthy eating habits have led to widening waistbands in Shanghai. [Photo:]


The Municipal Health Bureau and Sports Bureau and the Education Commission of Shanghai have jointly launched a program aimed at slimming down obese students.


The local newspaper Oriental Morning Post reported on Tuesday that the program will issue plans for balanced school meals and restrict campus stores from selling junk food, as well as involving the students in physical exercise.


The overweight student population has been on the rise lately in Shanghai. According to the latest health survey, 11.5 percent of the city's students between the ages of seven and twenty-two are now overweight.


Obesity can trigger various mental and physical diseases, the report quoted a medical expert as saying.


The program will also initiate lectures on healthy diets and lifestyles for teachers and parents, and will offer personal consultations for students whose weights are severely above what is considered healthy.


The program is expected to reduce the number of overweight students by five to 10 percent within two years, and should boost their comprehensive physical fitness by about 10 percent.


( January 30, 2008)


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