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What exactly is stunting our growth?

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posted on Apr, 14 2004 @ 04:39 PM
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news.bbc.co.uk...

This article illustrates the increasing height difference between European and American men over time. While Europeans seem to be growing taller, Americans are shrinking or at least staying the same height.

I wonder if this is due to our awful diets (quality of food, not quantity) or something else? They mention pre and post natal care as another possible cause for concern. The US is the most powerful nation in the world, but could it be that we're not getting the heath care we should?

Maybe this height difference over time is caused by something else. I don't know what.... Heh, are the Europeans evolving faster than Americans?




posted on Apr, 14 2004 @ 05:09 PM
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I have to wonder from what segment of the population they are pulling the American numbers from. It seems to me that if they are including some of the newer immigrant populations, this could affect the results. I have noticed that on average, people from South and Latin America as well as Asians tend to be shorter. Earlier immigrants were from European countries. I'm not saying the study is inaccurate, but I think there may be a demographic factor that they are not taking into account.



posted on Apr, 14 2004 @ 05:20 PM
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I do not think you can define "evolving" by general frame height. The reverse may be true given the height of same fossils from Antiquity. Mankind might have actually been a lot bigger/ larger framed and the skelatal structure has begun to shrink as our relience on technology and machinery increases. Face it Americans do little or none, physical manual labor thus the genetic requirment to have larger frames, structures and mass is reduced over time. But I do not see where Americans are getting smaller then people from other countries. In fact I am 5'11 and 220lbs yet my personal perception of myself is that I am below average in size compared to alot of guys I know. And yet I know that when I am removed from my circle of friends that I am physically much larger then most people that I see in public.



posted on Apr, 16 2004 @ 12:43 PM
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AS, you bring up a good point. I wonder if this study took into account the influx of different ethnic groups over time. The demographics of the United States has definatley changed over time, so has that of Europe.

Places like Britain, Holland, and France have had their massive waves of immigration more recently that the US. So maybe that could play a role.

This study also surprised me, I'm 5'11 too, and I've always thought that I'm slightly below average height (for an American) This study would suggest otherwise. Who knows, maybe I just notice the people who are taller than I am...



posted on Apr, 16 2004 @ 01:04 PM
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I think the different body shapes has a lot to do with the weather conditions in the place they originally came from. An African person is likely to be taller and leaner to deal with the heating of the body. If they are taller they have more body area to sweat and can cool down more quickly. An Eskimo or European is likely to be stocker and shorter so they can conserve their body heat in colder climates. The added fat and a more compact body can deal with extreme cold better than a lean tall body.

So its conditioning. The European body will likely attempt to build body fat at a greater rate than an African body their by exaggerating this effect in the modern human.



posted on Apr, 16 2004 @ 01:51 PM
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I don't know if this study is correct to beggin with. I am just over 6 feet tall, and am the shortest of most of my friends. In general, I'd say that the US physically is very tall. I have spent a lot of time in Europe - mostly Paris and London, and I felt like a giant over there. I would be interested to see where he pooled his populations from - that might shed some light on things.



posted on Apr, 17 2004 @ 10:31 AM
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Originally posted by Flinx
news.bbc.co.uk...

This article illustrates the increasing height difference between European and American men over time. While Europeans seem to be growing taller, Americans are shrinking or at least staying the same height.

I wonder if this is due to our awful diets (quality of food, not quantity) or something else? They mention pre and post natal care as another possible cause for concern. The US is the most powerful nation in the world, but could it be that we're not getting the heath care we should?

Maybe this height difference over time is caused by something else. I don't know what.... Heh, are the Europeans evolving faster than Americans?

We eat more processed foods with more additives, preservatives, artificial sweetners, msg, sacharine etc...
All of these things are bad for us in many ways, but we are so used to it, that we don't think about it.
We are conditioned from birth to accept this as the way people eat, and our minds are left in a haze that allows us to be more succeptable to the media ads that keep telling us we need more of these foods. Even our vegetables are showered with chemicals.. I don't wonder about it at all... and they make organic foods so freakin expensive that only well off or single people can afford to eat them.



posted on Apr, 17 2004 @ 10:36 AM
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Originally posted by Ambient Sound It seems to me that if they are including some of the newer immigrant populations, this could affect the results.


Nope, it's not that.

Immigrants, and people of either Hispanic or Asian ancestry were not included in the study.



posted on Apr, 17 2004 @ 11:22 AM
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Originally posted by Flinx
I wonder if this is due to our awful diets (quality of food, not quantity) or something else? They mention pre and post natal care as another possible cause for concern. The US is the most powerful nation in the world, but could it be that we're not getting the heath care we should?


Diet has a lot to do with it. Proper nutrition is necessary for growth, and Americans have the worst nutrition compared to food availability in the world. Meaning, that in some countries the diet is worse, but it's because the right foods aren't available.

Prenatal and postnatal care is seriously overrated for otherwise healthy people, and is itself a huge money-making venture for doctors and other health professionals. For low and average risk births, the real danger is infection from unsterile conditions, and with antiseptics readily available at any reputable supermarket or Wal-Mart (let alone suppliers that midwives have access to) a minimally-assisted birth at home with some help from a midwife is not significantly more dangerous than a hospital birth. Some studies have shown hospitals to be worse for low-risk and average-risk mothers due to repeated exposure to other infectious agents, the routine use of unnecessary surgical procedures, and overuse of drugs. Not to mention the psychological stress of an unfamiliar environment with all the machines and multiple strangers forcibly taking over a significant, personal event.

In girls, speficially, being overweight has an effect on growth by ushering in puberty too early. Girls who are normal weight for their height or slightly underweight (not severely) will often grow taller because they grow for a longer period of time before physical development cuts it off. In boys, nutrition is important, but their development is not as dependent on body fat and their weight matters less in terms of when they stop growing. The childhood obesity and verweight epidemics could very well cause the next generation of girls to be shorter than they would be otherwise.

I come from a short family, but there were a few tall people in the family tree. As a child I was very tall for my age, and my pediatricians told my parents for years that I would likely be at least as tall as my father when fully grown and possibly even near 6 feet tall, judging from my growth pattern and bone structure. Unfortunately, I reached physical maturity around my ninth birthday, which put an end to any hopes of being model-tall or even athlete-tall. I grew 4 more inches over 3 years and stopped. I didn't just grow fast and end up the proper height; my torso hasn't grown any taller since I was in fourth grade but my legs did. I'm the only person I know who has to pair regular-length and sometimes even tall-length pants with children's tops.



posted on Apr, 20 2004 @ 02:01 AM
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Could be the kind of stress we got nowadays. Like sitting at a desk letting the adrenaline build up in you is bound to have some kinda effect on you.

You get rid of adrenaline better fighting a sabre-tooth tiger than writing signatures and pushing buttons.



posted on Apr, 20 2004 @ 02:04 AM
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Originally posted by AceOfBase

Originally posted by Ambient Sound It seems to me that if they are including some of the newer immigrant populations, this could affect the results.


Nope, it's not that.

Immigrants, and people of either Hispanic or Asian ancestry were not included in the study.


Well what is it then?

I hope your reply is not just this.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 03:08 PM
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i thought it was the opposite, as many posters have already expressed. so i hope that since im posing the exact opposite of the thread question, im relating this to the thread: why is the average height rising?

my science teacher said the steroids in meat, but i also know some tall vegetarians, so there has to be more to it than that.



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 03:51 PM
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I'm curious as to where they did this study also. Maybe its because I come from a mountain/farming community, but there are a lot of tall men where I come from. In fact, at a little over 6'3", I am 2" taller than anyone in my family, on either side, as far back as anyone can remember. My sons, aged 16 and 17 are both presently at 6'3" and 6'4" respectively (and still growing). Maybe its diet, maybe its the air or the lifestyle, hell maybe the government has been putting stuff in our water, who knows. What I do know is that most of the males of my generation from my hometown definitely seem taller than average.
Kinda makes you wonder.

Peace,
BG



posted on Apr, 25 2004 @ 04:32 PM
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I wish I knew what was stunting my growth, because I am 5'0''!!!!
lol.

My mom is 5'0'' and my dad is 5'11''.

BTW, does anyone know what age girls stop growing at?



posted on Apr, 26 2004 @ 08:21 AM
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Nah, don't think so, at least, not in my family.

My dad and his syblings were taller than their parents (my dad and sybs are, on average, 6'2... my youngest aunt 6'4).

My brother and I are taller than my parents... I'm 6'6, my brother is 6'5.

My son, who is two years old, stands 3'2.

To me, it seems in my family, each next generation is becoming taller... but then again, it's just my family.



posted on Apr, 30 2004 @ 08:41 PM
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I would have to say they need to redo this study. And I do believe our overall height is affected by immigrant populations. Most caucasians I know are very tall in this country, me being an exception. In fact, Im seeing a massive increase in height. Like, kids in junior high being 6 feet tall. So I dunno where the hell they got this study. Did they just grab a bunch of Italians off the streets of new York? I remeber being in Europe, most people were smaller than us, that was one way it was easy to spot my fellow soldiers in a crowd during a festival, thier heads stuck out more.

I dont see how being shorter, though would be considered a problem, if this was indeed something emerging. or would it be evolution. In a world where resources are getting less and less, smaller people shall have somehwat of an advantage, I think.



posted on Apr, 30 2004 @ 08:47 PM
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It is very simple we are expanding, thats why we are smaller, but we are wider get it
americans are getting fatter and when you are wider you look smaller



posted on Apr, 30 2004 @ 09:25 PM
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I think it has to do with the overall size of the population. America has a greater population therefore more short people. But europe has a smaller population so there mean height could be could be affected more by a few tall people. So america is probaly more tall but it doesnt stand out as much.



posted on May, 1 2004 @ 09:00 PM
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Obviously all of us Americans are turning into Hobbits.

But seriously, for some reason that "study" didn't seem very scientific. Then again, from my lovely 5'0 vantage point, everyone seems tall.



posted on May, 2 2004 @ 12:37 PM
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Originally posted by NightGloom
Obviously all of us Americans are turning into Hobbits.


Read my above... we're turning into elves.




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