Women giving birth to 'sumo babies' is on the rise

More must be done to tackle the rising number of overweight "sumo babies", experts have said.

The number of larger-than-average newborns has been increasing since the 1960s because of the rising number of overweight and obese pregnant women, the National Obesity Forum said.

The number of larger-than-average newborns has been increasing since the 1960s, according to experts. Credit: PA

The average weight of a newborn is 7lb 4oz for a girl and 7lb 8oz for a boy, but figures obtained by The Sun found that almost a third of maternity wards have delivered babies weighing more than 12lb in the last year.

"It is a direct consequence of women going into pregnancy overweight and obese and thereby producing large babies. Unfortunately there is this old habit of 'eating for two'," Tam Fry of the National Obesity Forum said.