Doctors in Britain are conducting a controversial trial that will see more than 400 women take a diabetes pill during their pregnancies in an attempt to give birth to slimmer babies.
Recent figures have revealed that more than 15 percent of pregnant women are obese, increasing the chances of them giving birth to big babies weighing more than 11lbs at the time of birth. Recent studies have also shown that babies who are born with higher than normal birth weight are more likely to become obese by the time they reach their adulthood.
Now NHS doctors will be conducting a study to see whether giving the pregnant mothers a diabetes pill, metformin, from the second trimester of their pregnancies may lead to the birth of slimmer babies. However the study has attracted controversy from experts who believe that this will encourage obese women to avoid losing weight through exercise and diet and just pop a pill.
But lead researcher Professor Jane Norman of Edinburgh University said that telling women to reduce weight when they are already pregnant is not helpful. "I absolutely support the improvement of diet and encouraging exercise but we are increasingly faced with women who start their pregnancy obese. Saying at that stage to eat less and exercise more is not particularly helpful", she said.