Being tall is a confidence booster for teenagers. Some kids begin wondering why they aren’t as tall as their peers in the early years of adolescence and may start looking for ways to grow taller.
In this post, we will talk about how to get taller as a teenager and all the contributing factors for reaching your maximum potential height in your teenage years.
How To Get Taller As A Teenager
Some factors can help you reach your maximum potential height before you stop growing.
Once your growth plates fuse, there is little you can do to affect your height. However, you will still be able to influence how tall you look.
Here are some tips on how to get taller as a teenager:
- Maximize your genetic potential for growth during adolescence.
- Get the right vitamins and minerals in your diet.
- Achieve & maintain your optimal body weight.
- Exercise regularly.
- Get enough sleep.
- Boost your testosterone.
- Eat nutritious foods (avoid sugar & processed foods).
- Eat enough protein.
- Do not smoke or drink alcohol.
- Drink a lot of water.
- Maintain a good posture.
What Is The Average Height Of Men / Women In The US?
According to the CDC’s trusted source, the average height of American men 20 years old is about 5 feet 9 inches tall.
The average height for American women over 20 is 5 feet 4 inches.
Can You Predict How Tall You Will Be?
Your height is primarily determined by your genes. It’s estimated that your genetics determines about 60-80 percent of your height.
The other 20-40 percent is influenced by external factors like nutrition, sleep, and regular exercise.
You can estimate how tall you will most likely be by using the mid-parental method:
- Add your mother and father’s heights together and divide this by two.
- If you’re a boy, add 2.5 inches, and girls should subtract 2.5 inches.
For example, if dad is 5’10” and mom is 5’5,” then their son will probably be around 5’10”.
However, this is only a rough guide, not an exact prediction.
When Do Teenagers Stop Growing?
Teenagers will grow the most during puberty when they will experience growth spurts.
Teenage girls will grow most between the ages of 10 and 14. While teen boys will grow most between 12 and 16 years of age.
Boys reach their peak height around 16 years of age.
Even if you reach puberty late, you won’t grow significantly after age 18 to 20.
Men, however, continue to develop in other ways well into their twenties.
Do Late Bloomers Grow Taller?
Late bloomers eventually grow taller. Kids usually are either early bloomers or late bloomers.
Early bloomers usually reach their maximum height in their mid-teens.
On the other hand, late bloomers may experience growth spurts in their late teens or can even grow slightly in their early twenties.
Remember, a kid’s height is mainly determined by genetics and sex, and in most cases, their height will be an average of their parents’.
Some ways to trigger a growth spurt include eating a healthy diet, exercising, and getting plenty of sleep.
However, once your growth plates fuse, there is little you can do to affect your height.
It may be possible to gain a few inches by improving your posture. While improving your posture will help straighten your spine, it won’t make your bones longer.
Therefore, it is vitally important to maximize your genetic potential for growth during adolescence by eating a balanced diet, exercising, and getting enough sleep while you’re still growing.
Can Vitamins Make A Teenager Grow Taller?
Vitamins perform various vital functions in the body, one of which is aiding height growth.
The most popular height growth vitamin is vitamin D, as it plays a crucial role in bone mineralization and growth. It also regulates calcium and phosphorus metabolism, making your bones longer and stronger.
The primary and most accessible source of vitamin D is sunlight. All you need to do is spend a couple of minutes every morning or noon under the sun, and your body will gain adequate vitamin D.
Foods containing vitamin D include egg yolks, oily fish like mackerel, tuna, salmon, fish liver oils, cheese, beef liver, and fortified milk.
If you don’t get adequate vitamin D from your diet, you can use supplements but make sure you consult your doctor about usage and amounts. Remember, vitamin D also helps prevent rickets and bone diseases such as osteomalacia.
Vitamin B is also important as it helps the body convert food into energy. There are several nutritious foods high in vitamins in the B family, making it easy for teenagers to eat nutritiously during this growth phase.
Vitamin B can be found in whole grains, dairy products, cereals, leafy greens, legumes, seafood, chicken, turkey), fruits and vegetables.
For teenage girls, iron is an essential mineral during periods of growth. Teen girls lose more iron when they begin menstruating (start their period).
You can get more iron in your diet by eating spinach, broccoli, kale, red meat, and beans.
Can Losing Weight Make You Taller?
Yes, losing weight can help you look taller. Being overweight puts pressure on your vertebrae, making it harder to maintain an upright posture when sitting or standing.
Losing weight takes the pressure off your spine and enables you to achieve an upright posture, adding inches to your height.
Coupled with the increase in width, you will seem a few inches shorter than you really are.
Growth spurts usually happen during the teenage years. So when you adopt a healthy lifestyle, you will not only cut weight but also grow taller.
Post-pubertal height increase is rare, so if you are an obese teenager, it’s best to lose weight now while you still have the ability to grow taller.
Like malnutrition can cause stunted growth, obesity can also affect how much and when you grow.
Studies have shown that obesity and excess weight affect the start of puberty differently in girls and boys. Girls can experience early puberty, while boys can experience delayed puberty.
Maintaining a healthy weight is therefore crucial in teens during puberty and beyond.
Teenage Exercise To Grow Taller
Doing exercises is a great way to promote muscle growth and stimulate growth spurts in teenagers.
Stretching exercises are also great for lengthening the spine and improving posture, making you taller.
Popular stretching exercises that will help you add a few inches to your height include calf stretch, hanging from a bar, yoga stretches, pelvic stretch, and cobra stretch.
While there is little research on the effects of stretching exercises on a person’s height, anecdotal evidence shows that it works.
Remember to be patient and consistent if you plan to use exercises to increase your height. It will probably take a few months before you notice a height increase.
These exercises alone won’t do the magic so ensure you also eat a well-balanced diet and drink plenty of water.
Have a look at 7 stretches to grow taller & improve posture below:
Does Sleep Help you Grow Taller?
Getting enough sleep is probably one of the most important things a teenager can do to get taller.
Human growth hormones are usually released during sleep so getting adequate sleep is instrumental in increasing height growth.
Therefore, teens need to develop good sleeping habits such as avoiding caffeine before retiring and sticking to a sleeping schedule.
This way, they will make the most of the growth hormones released at night.
Studies also indicate that good sleep boosts focus and prevents depression-so it’s also great for general health.
Does Testosterone Make You Taller?
Yes, testosterone does help you grow taller. It is a male sex hormone that performs various functions in the body, such as boosting sex drive and improving bone mass and muscle strength.
Females also have testosterone but in lower amounts, as well as estrogen.
These hormones boost human growth hormone secretion, increasing bone strength and length, and growth spurts in teens.
Foods that boost testosterone levels include dark greens, eggs, avocados, and fatty fish such as salmon.
Testosterone supplements are also available, but you’ll need to consult a health practitioner before using them, and it is not recommended for healthy teens.
Does Eating A Lot Make You Taller?
Not really. Eating more calories than your body needs will not make you taller, only bigger.
However, eating the right amount of food and having a proper diet can boost your chances of adding a few inches before your teenage years are over.
Your diet should include whole grains, proteins, fresh vegetables, dairy products, healthy fats, and fresh fruits.
The building blocks of muscle, organs, bones and other tissues that grow and develop during the growth spurt are proteins.
Some teens believe they must consume excessive amounts of protein. Teenagers typically need about half a gram of protein per pound of body weight. If a teenager weighs 150 pounds, that’s 75 grams of protein each day.
Foods that are high sources of protein include eggs, dairy products, lean meats, nuts, nut butter, beans, quinoa, and tofu.
Remember to combine proper nutrition with exercises to get the best results.
This may include eating a good breakfast and knowing how to prepare healthy snacks instead of grabbing fast food.
Foods That Stunt Growth
A University of Jerusalem study showed that processed food could lead to stunted growth in children.
Processed foods typically go through many processing stages and lose most nutrients.
Lab rodents in the early stages of development were fed junk food in the research, and their physical development was examined.
The researchers noticed “high levels of cartilage buildup in the rodents’ growth plates, the “engine” of bone growth.” This shows that junk food has a negative effect on healthy bone development.
Other foods that can hinder your child’s development include sugary foods and soft drinks like soda, so limiting your sugar intake is advisable.
Certain growth inhibitors like smoking, alcohol, narcotics, and even antibiotics can cause stunted growth in teenagers. These should be avoided, especially if you want to grow taller.
Does Playing Basketball Make You Tall?
Basketball players are typically taller than an average tall person.
Basketball involves a lot of running and jumping, and a player needs to be in top physical form to perform well. So in a way, playing basketball could make you taller.
The constant jumping triggers growth hormones and could make you taller than your predicted height.
Although there is no study showing the direct effect of basketball on height, some people who have played the sport from a young age did say that their final height was more than what was predicted at puberty.
Does Drinking Milk Make You Taller?
One aspect of height increase is the increase in bone length.
Milk contains essential nutrients such as calcium, zinc, and potassium. Fortified milk has vitamin D. Calcium and vitamin D play an important role in the strengthening and lengthening of bones.
So, we can say that drinking milk makes you taller.
No research confirms this claim, but calcium’s effect on strong bones indicates it’s essential in height and healthy growth.
Calcium also helps osteoporosis, a condition that reduces bone tissue and makes your bones weak. Over time, this condition can make a person appear shorter.
What Drinks Make You Taller?
No research shows the direct impact of drinks on height. But you can boost height growth by drinking the following healthy drinks:
- Milk – contains vital bone growth nutrients such as calcium, potassium, zinc, and magnesium.
- Water – drinking enough water helps you stay hydrated and ensures the various organs in the body function well. It plays an important role in vitamin and mineral absorption. Water also improves digestion, thus enabling the body to extract maximum nutrients from food. In addition, water is crucial in getting rid of toxins from your body. All these functions boost the height growth rate in teenagers.
Getting taller as a teenager mainly depends on factors like genetics, sex, and hormones. But healthy practices like working out, eating a proper diet, and getting enough sleep can positively impact height growth.
Try them and see what happens in the next few months or years!