It’s common for babies to be born too heavy in Iceland; the ratio is higher here than in other countries as comparatively more mothers in Iceland are obese, which is a matter of concern, as obstetrician Snorri Einarsson told Morgunblaðið.
These babies are usually not as healthy as babies of the average weight, Snorri stated. The lifestyle of expecting mothers has an impact on the wellbeing of the child they’re carrying and therefore obesity should not be considered a private matter but rather a public health issue. However, healthcare authorities appear to be unwilling to face the problem, he said.
In 2011-2014, 842 newborns in Iceland were too heavy, or more than 4.5 kilos (9.9 lbs), whereas 1,400 newborns in the U.K. were too heavy in the same period.
The per capita ratio is therefore much higher in Iceland than in the U.K., as 64 million people live in the U.K. but only 330,000 in Iceland.
Still, according to Statistics Iceland, the number of overweight newborns in Iceland has dropped from the period 1998-2001, when 1,159 babies were born too heavy.
In Iceland, 20 percent of the population is obese, while 12 percent of the populations in the other Nordic countries have the same problem, ruv.is reports.
However, it is pointed out that not only obese mothers give birth to heavy children; they’re above average weight can also be attributed to Icelanders generally being tall.