How to Grow Taller: a Guide to Increasing Your Height

Many people are interested in how height works and if there’s a way to influence it. For some, it’s just a matter of curiosity, but for others, height is a pain point that they’re desperately trying to deal with.

This topic has created some buzz in both the scientific community and everyone else that wants to know whether there’s a chance to make themselves grow taller.

To spare you of suspense, the answer is yes, you can. If you want to understand the reasons behind this good news and learn a few tips on how to grow taller, just keep reading.

How Does Growth Work?

It’s well-known that linear growth reaches its peak during peak during puberty. But how does this happen? Well, it’s your pituitary gland that plays a major role, since it releases growth hormones into your bloodstream.

Growth hormones reach most parts of your body and promote their growth until the epiphyses have fused it, after which growth stops.

The release of growth hormones occurs in pulses of every couple of hours. The mechanism of this release is controlled by the hypothalamus, which releases two additional hormones to this effect. The first is the growth hormone-releasing hormone, which prompts the pituitary gland to release growth hormones. The second is somatostatin, which inhibits this release.

Even though 60-80% of growth is determined by genetics, there are other factors to it. This is great news, as it means that there are still some things that you can do to grow taller even after your production of growth hormones had reached its peak.

Here are some tips that can help you debunk the popular myth that growth comes to a halt after puberty:

  • Get a Good Night’s Sleep

Sleep is extremely important to our overall health, but you probably already know this. What you might not know, though, is that most of your growth happens during sleep, so sleep deprivation can have a negative effect on the release of growth hormones.

Try to get around 7-8 hours of uninterrupted sleep every night. This will help your body regenerate, which can promote the release of growth hormones. If you’re suffering from any sleep disorders, such as apnea, know that it can also negatively affect growth, so try to deal with it as soon as possible.

  • Maintain a Healthy Diet

This is another piece of advice that you’ve heard plenty, but there is good reason for this. The nutrients that our bodies absorb from food play a major role in the body’s processes, including growth.

Here’s a seemingly crazy fact: The Dutch became Europe’s tallest people during the period when the country experienced an explosive growth in wealth. You’re probably wondering how it’s possible to relate growth with money. Well, the answer is simple – healthy food. For the longest time it was the shortest nation in Europe until the Netherlands’ wealth per capita increased to the point that everyone could afford healthy food and reversed the course. Experts state that there’s a very strong link to making the Dutch Europe’s tallest people.

If you want to grow taller, eat foods that contain the following height-boosting vitamins and minerals:

  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin B1
  • Calcium
  • Zinc
  • Phosphorus

If you do this, your body’s ability to replace lost cells will increase, and your growth hormones might come back in larger quantities.

  • Do Stretching Exercises

If you haven’t done this before, it’s a good idea to start. Even though it won’t do much in terms of helping your body produce more growth hormones, it can help your backbone to reach its full height potential.

When the supporting muscles develop properly, your backbone can lengthen and stretch. It won’t make you a giant, but you can certainly benefit from an extra inch or two.

The best exercises for this include swimming, crunches, pull-ups, back stretching, and hanging exercises. If you make them a part of your daily routine, there’s a high chance you’ll grow at least a little bit.

  • Don’t Slouch

Maintaining good posture is very important. It might not make you taller, but it will prevent you from suppressing your height. When you slouch, you put a lot of pressure on your spinal cord. Not only does this make you appear shorter, but it can actually stop you from growing and physically make you shorter.

To prevent this, make sure to keep the right posture as much as you can. Keep your head level, push your chest out a bit, and slightly flex your abs to provide support for your back.

  • Don’t Smoke

Everyone knows that smoking is bad. It has a myriad of negative effects on our body, some of which can be life-threatening. If everything you’ve heard about smoking isn’t enough to make you want to quit, maybe its effect on your height might be a good motivator.

Smoking has been proven to limit growth. If you refrain from smoking, not only might you end up growing taller, but you can also protect your body from a variety of health conditions that can make your height the least of your concerns.

The Takeaway

There’s nothing wrong with being short. If you’re not satisfied with your height, there’s no reason to dwell on this. Still, if you really want to learn how to grow taller, the tips listed here might be a good starting point.

What’s important here is to arm yourself with patience and be realistic with your goals. Genetics is still the determining factor of your height, so all the efforts to make yourself grow taller can only take you so far. If you persist with adopting the habits that can make you taller, you might be able to increase your height by a couple of inches.

This might not sound like much, but it can make quite a bit of difference, especially for shorter people. Even if you don’t get the results you expect, all of the above advice can increase the quality of your life, as well as your confidence, so height might become something you’ll stop thinking about altogether.

References:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/7914344
http://www.yourhormones.info/glands/pituitary-gland/
https://www.britannica.com/science/epiphysis
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2107038
https://www.hormone.org/hormones-and-health/hormones/somatostatin
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/how-much-of-human-height/
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23631138
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4934575/
http://carlechiropractic.com/5-ways-poor-posture-can-limit-height-growth/
https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/smoking-won-t-help-teens-lose-weight-may-stunt-growth-study-1.718537

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