Do ab workouts affect your height? What does science say about weightlifting in general affecting height?
There are many myths surrounding the benefits of lifting weights and working out. Some people believe that lifting weights will make them taller. Others claim that it makes them shorter. But do these claims hold any truth?
I’ve done tons of research on this topic and found absolutely no scientific evidence supporting either side of the argument. But before we start, here’s a quick recap of the basics. Lifting weights helps build muscle mass and burn fat. It also improves bone density and strengthens joints. And lastly, working out increases testosterone levels and boosts energy.
Now that we’ve got that out of the way let’s dive into the science behind why ab training won’t affect your height. Or does it?
Do Ab Workouts Affect Your Height?
There is no scientific evidence showing that performing sit-ups will affect your height. However, evidence suggests that training your abdominals may help you develop stronger bones and improve your posture, which might increase height.
When you work out your abs, you increase bone density and add pressure to your spine. You might think this is good for growing taller, but there are some adverse side effects too.
If you’re worried about becoming short because of doing so much ab training, don’t worry. No scientific evidence supports the idea that working out your abs will cause you to grow shorter.
People believe that working out your abs makes you shorter because they forget that bones are living tissue. New ones constantly replace bones, and the old ones die off. So if you exercise one part of your body, like your legs, you’ll see that those bones are stronger than the others.
But if you exercise another part of your body, such as your arms, you might notice that your arm bones aren’t as strong. And since our bodies use the strongest bones to support us, the weaker bones are used less often, becoming smaller over time.
Now, what happens if you exercise your abs every day?
Like how exercising your legs strengthens your leg bones and your abs strengthen your spine. And since your spine supports your head, neck, shoulders, and torso, it becomes even stronger.
So yes, working out your abs does make your spine stronger. However, it doesn’t mean that your spine will grow longer. Posture improvement will, though. Let’s dive a bit deeper into the subject.
What Affects Growth?
According to a study published in Nature Communications, genetic factors play the most significant role in your height. Researchers found that genetics account for about 70% of human height variation.
This includes genes that regulate bone density, muscle mass, and hormones. The study also suggests that environmental factors such as nutrition, exercise, and stress levels do not affect how tall people grow.
The researchers say that overall health, sleep quality, and nutrition is also essential. They found that people with poor sleep quality tend to be shorter than those who don’t experience sleep problems. In addition, people who eat less fiber tend to be shorter.
The findings come from a study conducted by scientists from Harvard University, Stanford University, Columbia University Medical Center, and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard.
The research team analyzed genetic data from 2,936 individuals across six populations. These included three European populations — Icelanders, French Canadians, and Sardinians; and three African populations — Yoruba people from Nigeria, Luhya people from Kenya, and Biaka Pygmies from Central Africa.
Let’s see what affects our growth…
This is more important in our growing pain years than later in life.
Malnourished children commonly experience stunted growth in height due to a lack of calcium, proteins, vitamin D, and many other nutrients.
This leads to poor bone health and muscle development. In addition, children with eating disorders often suffer from low body weight and malnutrition.
Calcium plays a crucial role in healthy skeletal development. Calcium deficiencies during childhood can lead to rickets, a disease characterized by softening of bones, brittle teeth, and pain.
Protein deficiency causes stunting of height and weight, while vitamin D helps regulate calcium absorption. Vitamin D is essential for the normal development of bones, muscles, and nerves.
The good news is that there are simple ways to prevent and treat nutritional problems.
For example, you can ensure your child gets plenty of calcium, protein, vitamins, and iron throughout life.
You can also help them eat well by giving them nutritious foods like milk and cheese, eggs, meat, fish, beans, broccoli, and spinach.
The CDC’s 2018 National Health Statistics report found that men are averagely taller than their female counterparts.
On average, men stand 5 inches taller than women. This is true across race, ethnicity, age, education level, income, and employment status. However, there are exceptions.
For example, black women are shorter than white women.
And Hispanic women tend to be shorter than both white and black women. In terms of height, men are taller than women.
4) Bone Health
The health status of your bones while growing up affects how tall you become later in life.
For example, children born with specific conditions such as osteogenesis imperfecta (OI), Marfan syndrome, and fibrodysplasia ossificans progressiva (FOP) tend to grow shorter than average because their bones don’t fully develop.
Conditions like OI and FOP cause abnormal bone growth, making it difficult for the body to form long bones properly. In addition, some people with these conditions experience joint problems and hearing loss.
Other conditions that can shorten stature include rickets, scurvy, and hypophosphatemia.
As I mentioned, rickets occurs when there isn’t enough vitamin D in the blood. People with rickets often have soft, brittle bones that break easily. Vitamin D helps build strong bones.
Scurvy, another deficiency disease, causes bleeding gums, loose teeth, fatigue, and poor wound healing.
Low levels of phosphate in the blood cause hypophosphatemia. This mineral is needed to help rebuild healthy bones.
Your pituitary gland releases human growth hormone (HGH) while you sleep. HGH is an anabolic hormone because it helps build muscle, connective tissue, and bones.
Sleep plays a big part in how much HGH you produce. You need about eight hours of deep sleep every night, less than six hours, and you won’t grow as fast as you could. But don’t worry too much about what happens during those eight hours—your body makes enough HGH to keep you healthy no matter what.
Foods That May Increase Height
Beans are one of 11 foods promoted by the National Institutes of Health as beneficial to growing taller.
These include beans, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, kale, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes, yogurt, almonds, and eggs.
A recent study published in the journal Cell Metabolism found that people whose diets included five servings of vegetables and fruits per day had a lower risk of death due to cardiovascular disease than those who ate fewer than three servings daily.
This suggests that eating colorful plant foods could help prevent heart problems later in life.
Beans are nutrient-dense, high in protein (5 grams per half cup), fiber (4 grams per half cup), and iron (1.7 milligrams per half cup). They contain folate, potassium, magnesium, B vitamins, zinc, copper, and manganese.
One cup of cooked navy beans provides about 200 calories, 8 grams of carbohydrates, 7 grams of protein, 4 grams of fat, and 2 grams of dietary fiber.
Chicken is another nutritious choice. It’s a superfood because it contains high levels of selenium, vitamin D, niacin, and omega-3 fatty acids.
Studies show that chicken consumption increases bone mineral density in older men.
How can I increase my height?
– Eat A Balanced, Healthy Diet.
The best way to get all the nutrients you need is through food. You can increase your height by eating a balanced diet and taking supplements. However, you may need additional nutritional supplements if you have specific health issues.
Eat more green leafy vegetables.
Green leafy vegetables are rich in folic acid sources, essential for proper cell division and growth.
– Take Supplements.
Apart from a healthy diet taking the right supplements can help increase height by improving overall health. For example, calcium supplementation has been shown to improve bone strength and reduce the risk of osteoporosis.
– Get Enough Sleep.
Your pituitary gland releases growth hormones while you’re sleeping. Growth hormones stimulate the body’s production of proteins needed for muscle, connective tissues, and bones.
Sleep plays a vital role in your bone development both in terms of its quantity and quality
– Be Active/Exercise
Regular exercise and being active can affect height growth. You’ll increase muscle strength by being active, leading to a more straightened spine and better posture. This leads to our next point.
– Improve Your Posture.
Improving your posture will lead to an immediate increase in your height. At least optical. It’s simple; you will look and even be taller with a straight back.
Face pulls are a very effective exercise to strengthen the shoulder muscles and are also a great way to help you get a better posture.
– Start Practising Yoga
Yoga is excellent for stretching and improving your posture, influencing your height.
What Is The Best Exercise That May Increase Height
If you want to grow taller fast, plenty of stretching exercises exist. But some of those don’t work like traditional stretches. Instead of lengthening muscles, they focus on increasing your core strength.
The best exercise to achieve this is the Cobra Stretch. To perform this stretch, begin by standing upright with your feet shoulder-width apart. Next, bend forward at the hips while maintaining a straight back. As you lean down, use both hands to grip a sturdy object, like a countertop or a doorway, behind you. Hold this position for approximately 30 seconds, then repeat the process thrice.
No scientific evidence shows that doing sit-ups will cause you to grow taller. However, some evidence suggests that working out the abdominal muscles may improve bone density and better posture, which could lead to increased height.
Training your abs will strengthen and strengthen your spine. Strengthening your core will benefit you in many ways, forming a solid base for 90% of your exercises and easing lower back pain.
I want to emphasize that one shouldn’t solely exercise to increase their height, even if it’s just abs exercises. We should exercise to improve our overall physique and health.
Everyone should train each muscle group properly. Only exercising one muscle group can cause issues such as muscular imbalance and poor posture, which will make someone look shorter.
What is your opinion about this topic?
Please let me know in the comment section below.
Stay Healthy and Strong!