If Tall Is Your Type, We Have Some Really Bad News For You


It's good all the best things come in small packages -- because no one is getting any taller.

At least, Americans aren't getting any taller. According to a new study, Americans seem to have stopped growing.

The report, which looks at height data from many countries over the last hundred or so years, reveals people in the USA were among the tallest in the world a century ago.

Now however, it appears Americans' growth is stunted, and other nations have taller people.

Part of the study, published on eLife, reads,

There were also variations in the time course of height change across high-income western countries, with height increase having plateaued in Northern European countries like Finland and in English-speaking countries like the UK for 2–3 decades, followed by Eastern Europe. The earliest of these occurred in the USA, which was one of the tallest nations a century ago but has now fallen behind its European counterparts after having had the smallest gain in height of any high-income country. In contrast, height is still increasing in some Southern European countries (e.g., Spain), and in many countries in Latin America.

Back in 1914, American men and women ranked third and fourth tallest in the world respectively.

By 2014, American men and women ranked 37th and 42nd tallest in the world respectively.

The reasons for this?

Well, the authors behind the study say it could be linked to a worsening diet among Americans.

But, the authors also say they did not rule out immigration or influxes of residents from countries where the average height is shorter as explanations for their conclusions.

Citations: Americans are Becoming Shorter Compared to Other Nationalities (TIME), A century of trends in adult human height (eLIFE)