London: Pregnant mothers who are obese are risking their babies’ lives, according to a new study.
Researchers from Teesside University, Durham and Newcastle Universities found that more than one lakh babies a year are at risk of death, deformity or serious health problems because of a surge in obesity among pregnant women, reports the Daily Express.
They also found that maternal obesity has more than doubled over the last two decades with one in six women now clinically obese when they conceive.
“We were really surprised to discover such high levels of obesity in such a young age group. A lot of women get pregnant without thinking of the consequences of being obese while pregnant,” said Nicola Heslehurst, a health scientist at Teesside University, who helped compile the study.
The study, the first long-term investigation into obesity levels in pregnancy, involved more than 600,000 women who gave birth at 38 hospitals in the UK.
The study is published in the International Journal of Obesity.