Textbook calls cancer a ‘disease of choice’ — and it’s required reading for UNC students | News & Observer

Undergraduates at UNC are required to take a one credit hour course called Lifetime Fitness. Chris Seward
A textbook for a required fitness class at UNC-Chapel Hill calls cancer a disease of choice, describes a theory that Holocaust victims failed to tap into their inner strength and maintains that “many if not most women” who are obsessed with weight have become habitual dieters.

The online textbook, “21st Century Wellness,” also includes standard information about fitness, nutrition and health. It is read by students in a one-credit hour course called Lifetime Fitness, required of all undergraduates at UNC. Each year, nearly 5,000 undergraduates take the class, which is aimed at teaching students about healthy lifestyles while incorporating a physical activity such as tennis, soccer or running.

Skye Golann, who graduated from UNC in May, took the class in the fall of 2017. He made an A, and said he enjoyed the physical activity twice a week as part of the class.

But he said the online course reading materials were “beyond bad.” He said he would sometimes read his girlfriend passages of “the craziest thing I found in the book that week.”

Golann said the book gives short shrift to genetic or societal factors that affect people’s health — for example, a lack of access to health care and good nutrition for many lower-income people. “There’s an extreme emphasis on personal responsibility that pretty much explicitly blames people in poor health,” he said, “which I thought was very problematic.”

Calling cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular problems diseases of choice goes too far, Golann said.

“Who doesn’t know someone who is a survivor or someone who died of cancer?” Golann added. “I remember thinking about, reading it — we have a huge cancer hospital less than a mile away.”

Positive thinking and natural choices
The book was written by two professors of exercise science at Brigham Young University, including Barbara Lockhart, a former Olympic speedskater who has taught mind/body integration, according to biographical information of the authors. The book explores the power of positive thinking, traditional Chinese medicine and making natural choices about health, as opposed to “surgery, drugs, or other means to achieve your desired ends.”

Christopher Johnson, the developer of the online course as part of a company called Bearface Instructional Technologies, said the information was peer reviewed by professors across the nation and by UNC faculty before the course book adoption.

Johnson left the publisher’s parent company, Indianapolis-based Perceivant, last year and formed a new higher education technology startup. He acknowledged that there had been some negative feedback about some elements of the book, but said scientific evidence backs up information that personal choices such as smoking, drug use and poor nutrition create risk factors for disease.

“Nowhere do we make character judgments,” Johnson said. “In fact, one of the approaches of the book is to really help students understand to build a sense of intrinsic motivation, that they need to get their source of energy and value from within, and not to say, because you’re overweight you’re not a good person. … In our society today, the diseases that kill most people — a vast majority are because of people’s behaviors.”

UNC adopted the online course materials a few years ago, said Darin Padua, chair of exercise and sport science, though the Lifetime Fitness course has been in existence for nearly 15 years.

Lifetime Fitness replaced the university’s required traditional physical activity courses. Padua said the change was made to give students more of an education on fitness and healthy living, as opposed to one standalone sports class that would be less likely to have a long-term benefit for students.

The course modules revolve around basic themes of how to have a healthy lifestyle, including cardiovascular fitness, muscles, endurance and strength, flexibility, nutrition and weight management, Padua said.

He said UNC seeks student reviews on its classes, and the strengths and weaknesses of how the content is presented.

“Each year we get feedback and we try to keep things updated as information changes,” Padua said, adding, “We work with the publishing group, Bearface, to make modifications on a regular basis.”

‘You’re going to definitely get criticisms’
“When you’re having over a thousand students through a course each year, you’re going to definitely get criticisms, and we take those very seriously because we want to make sure we’re providing the best educational content out there,” he said.

Padua said he wasn’t familiar with specific passages that the student critic mentioned and could not speak to them. But he said he would take a look at it.“Everyone realizes that there are a lot of factors that are related to disease, and it’s not a personal choice,” he added. “People have opportunities to maintain a healthy lifestyle but there are certain things that set people up to make that more difficult, for sure, based upon their surroundings and the environment and genetics.”

Online courseware is big business, and large publishing firms are racing to develop interactive materials to replace or supplement textbooks. Perceivant sells its health and fitness courseware to 14 universities, including Arizona State, Ohio State, Kennesaw State and Brigham Young universities. Its website includes a case study on UNC’s Lifetime Fitness class, and features the UNC logo along with those of other universities.

In a 2014 promotional video, Johnson said the firm wanted to grow revenue aggressively. That year, the company had $1 million in revenue but aimed for $36 million by this year, if it could spread the courses to 200 campuses. “Because faculty make the textbook adoption decision and students are required to make the purchase, we need to target the individual faculty who control the largest adoption programs,” he said in the video.

Not ‘one size fits all’
Joel Davis, director of collegiate partnerships at Perceivant, said the company has structured its contracts with authors to allow for customization based on each university’s needs. So, for example, at Kennesaw State in Georgia, the “21st Century Wellness” book was altered, with nine chapters written by the school’s own faculty and the other eight chapters from the original authors.

Davis said academic departments might view content and terminology differently.

“It’s not going to be a one size fits all,” Davis said. “Some people are going to not want this chapter but they’re going to want that chapter.”

Another advantage, Davis said, is that professors can monitor students’ engagement with the online class material and intervene if students appear to be in danger of failing. In UNC’s class, faculty can collect aggregated student data to see students’ fitness and learning outcomes.

The courses feature interactive elements, including a self assessment on fitness. Students can check their progress in the course, and they do the test at the end to see whether their fitness improved.

“It helps students understand, in a very personal way, how the academic content immediately impacted them,” Johnson said.

Johnson said the online course material is purchased for about $36 per student, much less than most textbooks. That includes the book, interactive software and other elements.

Golann said a required health class in college makes sense, and students want more information about mental health in particular. But UNC’s online course had the feel of a class outsourced to a private company. The content, he said, was not up to UNC’s standards.

“It is the only required textbook that every UNC student has to take,” he said. “At graduation, this is the only book that everyone’s supposedly read.”

Jane Stancill: 919-829-4559, @janestancill

Excerpts from ‘21st Century Wellness’
“While enduring the atrocities of the concentration camps in World War II, Victor Frankl developed his school of psychotherapy, which he called logotherapy. He realized deep down that his life had meaning no matter how inhumanely he was being treated by his captors. The people in the camps who did not tap into the strength that comes from recognizing their intrinsic worth succumbed to the brutality to which they were subjected. They gave up or felt they were not deserving of being treated better. After surviving the camps, Frankl taught that every life has meaning and it is up to each person to discover and believe in that meaning.”

“Physicists and biologists speak of coherence, the integration of vast amounts of complex activities within a system, whether the whole universe or the human being. We feel this phenomenon of coherence when our heart, mind and body are aligned. It gives us a feeling of wholeness, feeling connected within ourselves. This feeling can transcend to others, feeling a oneness with others, or even to the earth or the cosmos, feeling a oneness with life.”

“There are many hundreds of research studies that have been published on the health-related benefits of cardiorespiratory fitness and a physically active lifestyle. Most of these health benefits come in the form of reducing risk of chronic diseases that are both physical and mental in nature. Some experts have begun calling these diseases diseases of choice because how we choose to live, in large part, determines the risk of being diagnosed with disease like heart disease, cancer, dementia, and others.”

“The therapeutic versus eugenic argument can be applied to your choices for healthy living. Will you choose to take a natural approach to living a prudent lifestyle focusing on being physically active, eating well, getting enough sleep, avoiding tobacco and so forth? Will you choose to use options other than these natural paths such as surgery, drugs, or other means to achieve your desired ends? Our intent is to provide you not only with the knowledge but also the context for making these choices so that you are aware of the potential benefits or detrimental consequences of your choices.”

“Thinking positively about yourself and others and reducing negativity in your life will work like a magnet helping to attract more positive people and things into your life.”

“When obsessed with weight, many if not most women and some men have become habitual dieters. A restriction in the amount of food eaten may result in an immediate weight loss; however, it also puts the body into a ‘survival mode’ characterized by a reduction in metabolism.”

Undergraduates at UNC are required to take a one credit hour course called Lifetime Fitness. Chris Seward
A textbook for a required fitness class at UNC-Chapel Hill calls cancer a disease of choice, describes a theory that Holocaust victims failed to tap into their inner strength and maintains that “many if not most women” who are obsessed with weight have become habitual dieters.

The online textbook, “21st Century Wellness,” also includes standard information about fitness, nutrition and health. It is read by students in a one-credit hour course called Lifetime Fitness, required of all undergraduates at UNC. Each year, nearly 5,000 undergraduates take the class, which is aimed at teaching students about healthy lifestyles while incorporating a physical activity such as tennis, soccer or running.

Skye Golann, who graduated from UNC in May, took the class in the fall of 2017. He made an A, and said he enjoyed the physical activity twice a week as part of the class.

But he said the online course reading materials were “beyond bad.” He said he would sometimes read his girlfriend passages of “the craziest thing I found in the book that week.”

Golann said the book gives short shrift to genetic or societal factors that affect people’s health — for example, a lack of access to health care and good nutrition for many lower-income people. “There’s an extreme emphasis on personal responsibility that pretty much explicitly blames people in poor health,” he said, “which I thought was very problematic.”

Calling cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular problems diseases of choice goes too far, Golann said.

“Who doesn’t know someone who is a survivor or someone who died of cancer?” Golann added. “I remember thinking about, reading it — we have a huge cancer hospital less than a mile away.”

Positive thinking and natural choices
The book was written by two professors of exercise science at Brigham Young University, including Barbara Lockhart, a former Olympic speedskater who has taught mind/body integration, according to biographical information of the authors. The book explores the power of positive thinking, traditional Chinese medicine and making natural choices about health, as opposed to “surgery, drugs, or other means to achieve your desired ends.”

Christopher Johnson, the developer of the online course as part of a company called Bearface Instructional Technologies, said the information was peer reviewed by professors across the nation and by UNC faculty before the course book adoption.

Johnson left the publisher’s parent company, Indianapolis-based Perceivant, last year and formed a new higher education technology startup. He acknowledged that there had been some negative feedback about some elements of the book, but said scientific evidence backs up information that personal choices such as smoking, drug use and poor nutrition create risk factors for disease.

“Nowhere do we make character judgments,” Johnson said. “In fact, one of the approaches of the book is to really help students understand to build a sense of intrinsic motivation, that they need to get their source of energy and value from within, and not to say, because you’re overweight you’re not a good person. … In our society today, the diseases that kill most people — a vast majority are because of people’s behaviors.”

UNC adopted the online course materials a few years ago, said Darin Padua, chair of exercise and sport science, though the Lifetime Fitness course has been in existence for nearly 15 years.

Lifetime Fitness replaced the university’s required traditional physical activity courses. Padua said the change was made to give students more of an education on fitness and healthy living, as opposed to one standalone sports class that would be less likely to have a long-term benefit for students.

The course modules revolve around basic themes of how to have a healthy lifestyle, including cardiovascular fitness, muscles, endurance and strength, flexibility, nutrition and weight management, Padua said.

He said UNC seeks student reviews on its classes, and the strengths and weaknesses of how the content is presented.

“Each year we get feedback and we try to keep things updated as information changes,” Padua said, adding, “We work with the publishing group, Bearface, to make modifications on a regular basis.”

‘You’re going to definitely get criticisms’
“When you’re having over a thousand students through a course each year, you’re going to definitely get criticisms, and we take those very seriously because we want to make sure we’re providing the best educational content out there,” he said.

Padua said he wasn’t familiar with specific passages that the student critic mentioned and could not speak to them. But he said he would take a look at it.“Everyone realizes that there are a lot of factors that are related to disease, and it’s not a personal choice,” he added. “People have opportunities to maintain a healthy lifestyle but there are certain things that set people up to make that more difficult, for sure, based upon their surroundings and the environment and genetics.”

Online courseware is big business, and large publishing firms are racing to develop interactive materials to replace or supplement textbooks. Perceivant sells its health and fitness courseware to 14 universities, including Arizona State, Ohio State, Kennesaw State and Brigham Young universities. Its website includes a case study on UNC’s Lifetime Fitness class, and features the UNC logo along with those of other universities.

In a 2014 promotional video, Johnson said the firm wanted to grow revenue aggressively. That year, the company had $1 million in revenue but aimed for $36 million by this year, if it could spread the courses to 200 campuses. “Because faculty make the textbook adoption decision and students are required to make the purchase, we need to target the individual faculty who control the largest adoption programs,” he said in the video.

Not ‘one size fits all’
Joel Davis, director of collegiate partnerships at Perceivant, said the company has structured its contracts with authors to allow for customization based on each university’s needs. So, for example, at Kennesaw State in Georgia, the “21st Century Wellness” book was altered, with nine chapters written by the school’s own faculty and the other eight chapters from the original authors.

Davis said academic departments might view content and terminology differently.

“It’s not going to be a one size fits all,” Davis said. “Some people are going to not want this chapter but they’re going to want that chapter.”

Another advantage, Davis said, is that professors can monitor students’ engagement with the online class material and intervene if students appear to be in danger of failing. In UNC’s class, faculty can collect aggregated student data to see students’ fitness and learning outcomes.

The courses feature interactive elements, including a self assessment on fitness. Students can check their progress in the course, and they do the test at the end to see whether their fitness improved.

“It helps students understand, in a very personal way, how the academic content immediately impacted them,” Johnson said.

Johnson said the online course material is purchased for about $36 per student, much less than most textbooks. That includes the book, interactive software and other elements.

Golann said a required health class in college makes sense, and students want more information about mental health in particular. But UNC’s online course had the feel of a class outsourced to a private company. The content, he said, was not up to UNC’s standards.

“It is the only required textbook that every UNC student has to take,” he said. “At graduation, this is the only book that everyone’s supposedly read.”

Jane Stancill: 919-829-4559, @janestancill

Excerpts from ‘21st Century Wellness’
“While enduring the atrocities of the concentration camps in World War II, Victor Frankl developed his school of psychotherapy, which he called logotherapy. He realized deep down that his life had meaning no matter how inhumanely he was being treated by his captors. The people in the camps who did not tap into the strength that comes from recognizing their intrinsic worth succumbed to the brutality to which they were subjected. They gave up or felt they were not deserving of being treated better. After surviving the camps, Frankl taught that every life has meaning and it is up to each person to discover and believe in that meaning.”

“Physicists and biologists speak of coherence, the integration of vast amounts of complex activities within a system, whether the whole universe or the human being. We feel this phenomenon of coherence when our heart, mind and body are aligned. It gives us a feeling of wholeness, feeling connected within ourselves. This feeling can transcend to others, feeling a oneness with others, or even to the earth or the cosmos, feeling a oneness with life.”

“There are many hundreds of research studies that have been published on the health-related benefits of cardiorespiratory fitness and a physically active lifestyle. Most of these health benefits come in the form of reducing risk of chronic diseases that are both physical and mental in nature. Some experts have begun calling these diseases diseases of choice because how we choose to live, in large part, determines the risk of being diagnosed with disease like heart disease, cancer, dementia, and others.”

“The therapeutic versus eugenic argument can be applied to your choices for healthy living. Will you choose to take a natural approach to living a prudent lifestyle focusing on being physically active, eating well, getting enough sleep, avoiding tobacco and so forth? Will you choose to use options other than these natural paths such as surgery, drugs, or other means to achieve your desired ends? Our intent is to provide you not only with the knowledge but also the context for making these choices so that you are aware of the potential benefits or detrimental consequences of your choices.”

“Thinking positively about yourself and others and reducing negativity in your life will work like a magnet helping to attract more positive people and things into your life.”

“When obsessed with weight, many if not most women and some men have become habitual dieters. A restriction in the amount of food eaten may result in an immediate weight loss; however, it also puts the body into a ‘survival mode’ characterized by a reduction in metabolism.”

2019 presidency: PDP BoT moves to produce consensus candidate

​The Board of Trustees of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has begun moves to produce a consensus presidential candidate ahead of the party’s primaries slated for October 6.
Chairman of the Board, Sen. Walid Jibrin in a statement in Abuja on Monday, said the BoT has constituted a committee to discuss with all the aspirants with a view to reaching a consensus.
“A committee has been set up to discuss with all presidential aspirants to come up with one of them as the candidate. There are now 12 contestants.
“The party has been warned to manage the situation of new decampees to the party and also consider the role played by old members.
“As provided in the party’s constitution, the Board is empowered to regulate its proceedings and draw code of conduct for its members.
“The Board has decided to forward to the NWC its full recommendations. I wish to congratulate Gov Fayose for withdrawing from the presidential race,” he said.
Jibrin whose tenure was extended at the recently held meeting of the Board by five years as well as the Board’s Secretary, Sen. Adolphus Wabara, also said the BoT has cautioned its members against campaigning for any of the presidential aspirants
.

Tom Ford Named a New Lipstick After Cardi B and It Sold Out

Cardi B.
Here’s a fun side-plot to the New York Fashion Week feuding between Nicki Minaj and Cardi B: Tom Ford has gotten somewhat involved by immortalizing the latter rapper in lipstick form and he doesn’t care who knows it. Backstage at Tom Ford’s spring 2019 showlast Wednesday, the brand’s beauty division debuted a new batch of lipsticks under theirBoys & Girls line, a collection of 50+ lipsticks named after real-life humans you’ve probably heard of (Armie, Sonja, Cristiano, Chadwick), and even some you probably went to school with and are still Facebook friends with for some reason (Ashley, Jessica, Tony). Here’s where things get interesting: Cardi, a new sparkly blue shade, was one of several lipsticks recently added to the lineup last week. It was also the first individual lipstick the brand chose to promo on Instagram this past Saturday, one day after the wholeHarper’s incident. Is this Tom Ford taking an official stance of being Team Cardi without having to wear a shirt that reads “Team Cardi”? Was this Instagram post already scheduled days before the Icons party altercation took place and this all just a fun, opportune coincidence? Is the turnaround time for creating a sparkly blue lipstick less than 24 hours? Does anyone remember Nicki’s M.A.C Viva Glam lipstick collaboration andthe two lipsticks after that?! There are still many questions left to be answered, and while some commenters were disappointed with Tom Ford’s decision to align with Cardi during this controversial time, the blue lipstick quickly sold out in one day, which is almost as fast as Nicki’s hair color changes between runway shows and after-parties. Sorry! 

Trump Delivers $267 Billion Trade Escalation Out Of The Clear Blue Sky (Figuratively and Literally)


Donald Trump apparently wasn’t satisfied that people were worried enough about the prospect of tariffs on an additional $200 billion in Chinese goods.

As a reminder, the public comment period on the proposed next round of duties expired on Thursday and suffice to say the administration has been warned. Tech companies including Cisco and HP sent letters to the USTR on Thursday as the comment period lapsed. Other correspondence sent to Robert Lighthizer stressed that small and medium-sized enterprises as well as manufacturers are struggling to adapt to the new trade regime and won’t be nimble enough the deftly navigate the increasingly choppy waters in which global supply chains are being disrupted.

The problem, for the hundredth time, is that in addition to the threat the trade frictions pose to global growth (and, implicitly, to developing economies), the next round of tariffs on Chinese imports will invariably drive up prices on consumer goods in the U.S., potentially setting the stage for more inflation pressure and a more hawkish Fed.

Read more

The imposition of levies on an additional $200 billion in Chinese goods will immediately be met with retaliation from Beijing in the form of differentiated duties on $60 billion in U.S. products.

The question mark around the next escalation between Washington and Beijing relates to whether Trump will opt for a 25% duty or a 10% levy. There’s a ton more on that here, but the bottom line is that the higher the tariff rate, the more upside risk for inflation and the more downside for risk assets.

On Friday, Trump added another question mark.

While speaking to reporters aboard Air Force One, the President indicated that he may slap tariffs on another $267 billion in Chinese goods on top of the prospective duties on $200 billion in products. There’s no readily discernible reason why he would have said that today and given that his comments came while aboard the presidential jet, this latest escalation comes out of the clear blue sky, both figuratively and literally.

Here is the actual quote:

I hate to do this, but behind [the $200 billion] there is another $267 billion ready to go on short notice if I want.

That hypothetical second tranche would bring the total amount of Chinese goods taxed to around $500 billion (the initial duties on $50 billion in goods that were implemented in two steps on July 6 and August 23 + tariffs on $200 billion more expected this month + this new threat against $264 billion in items). That’s consistent with Trump’s “I’ll go to $500 billion” rhetoric from July.

Still unanswered is what the rate would be (i.e. 10% or 25%) and also up for grabs is whether he’s even serious at this point or whether he’s just saying whatever pops into his head while cruising around on a plane on the way another to one of his MAGA rallies in Fargo, where he’ll try to help raise cash for GOP Rep. Kevin Cramer’s Senate race (in the interest of accuracy, it’s actually not a rally, it’s a private fundraiser).

Read more on Cramer

Earlier today, Larry Kudlow made the media rounds, and here’s what he had to say about the tariffs, when pressed by Bloomberg:

He made similar comments to CNBC.

Trump’s new threats lend still more credence to the notion that this administration really has no intention of deescalating this situation. Trump needs battles to fight and windmills at which to tilt, especially in light of the fact that the tariffs are starting to hit home for folks in the farm belt.

There’s a narrative out there that says Trump “needs” or “wants” wins on trade ahead of the midterms. I continue to think that’s the wrong way to look at things. Trump needs, more than anything, an excuse to fire up his base and that base cares far more about finding confirmation bias for their misguided belief that globalism and nefarious foreigners are responsible for the decline of flyover America than they do about reality and actual results.

Six Parts Of Your Body You Are Most Likely Not Washing Well Enough

It’s not enough to rub that bar of soap across your body as you have to do a whole better if your intention is to keep your body sparkling clean. These are the parts that you should be lathering up regularly to keep them clean, fresh, and free of potentially harmful bacteria.

Behind Your Ears
The warm and recessed area of your ears is full of sebaceous glands which secrete sebum that provides an ideal hiding place for Staph aureus and Tinea capitis. If not cleaned daily, may start to produce a musty odor.

Belly Button
Belly buttons are warm, with nooks and crevices, which make them a great place for bacteria to hide. Swab your belly button daily with a cotton swab soaked in warm, soapy water or alcohol.

If you have a pierced belly button, it’s even more important to wash it regularly to prevent infections.

Tongue
A lot of the time, people only think of their teeth and gums when talking about dental hygiene and do not provide enough attention to the tongue, or they think that by using mouthwash, they can get it clean enough.

However, the tongue has lots of little ridges and bumps that can hide bacteria, resulting in bad breath and even tooth damage if not cleaned regularly.

Brush your tongue with your toothbrush while you are brushing your teeth or use a tongue scraper.

Scalp
While you may wash your hair regularly, how much attention are you paying to your scalp? While it’s not necessary to wash your hair daily, it is important to scrub and massage your scalp daily to avoid buildup of dead skin cells, that body mites and bacteria feast on.

Massaging your scalp daily with warm water not only increases blood flow but helps to manually remove the dead cells which can lead to dandruff

Your Back
Although your back gets wet while you’re standing in the shower, it needs to get much mor attention. You can buy a back scrubber or have your partner wash it for you with an exfoliating bath sponge, loofah, or washcloth at least two to three times a week to reduce the risk of developing skin and soft-tissue infections.

Under Your Fingernails
While you most likely wash your hands after using the restroom, but if you’re not scrubbing under your nails, you’re only doing half the job.

Faecal bacteria can set up shop and colonize in the area under your nails, and it is best to soak a cotton swab with warm, soapy water and swabbing it under your nails to gently remove bacteria and debris. Keeping nails short can also help prevent bacteria from thriving.

Alleged killer of xxxtentacion found and arrested

A 22-year-old tattoo artist has been arrested for the murder of rapper XXXTentacion who was fatally shot on Monday, June 18th in South Florida.

Deerfield Beach police arrested the local tattoo artist named Dedrick Devonshay Williams, aka Tattoman Chuckie, and he’s reportedly been charged with first-degree murder.

Dedrick’s charge sheet has been released and it shows that, in addition to murder, he was also charged with a probation violation. He was on probation for auto theft.