Height is one of the most determining factor for confidence, self-appeal and energy. Be it a male or a female, having an average amount of height plays a crucial role in your daily life. Boys can grow up to 22 years of age and 19 years is the crucial time which you need to concentrate on. But do remember that the growth is affected by number of factors in human body, the most important is your genes. So if you have genes that suppress the growth, there is nothing much you can do. On the contrary if you have inherited taller genes there are some factors which hinder your growth. But we never know which genes we have inherited. Nonetheless I will suggest you some tips which will enhance your growth. Note that these tips are for educational purposes only and not a serious rule of thumb.
The most important thing that affects your growth is your diet. Having ample amount of food may not fulfill your daily dietary demands. You should have balanced amounts of proteins, vitamins, minerals and salts.
1. Proteins – Proteins helps to enhance the muscle mass which further enhance your growth. Animal foods are rich source of proteins. Egg whites are also rich sources of proteins. If you are a vegan you can have alternative protein supplements like beans, soy milk, quinoa, buck wheat, lentils, oats etc.
2. Vitamin D – Vitamin D is required for absorption of calcium into bones which will enhance growth and strengthen of your bones. Salmon and Tuna fishes, egg yolk, cheese, milk, citrus juices are abundant in Vitamin D. Have a walk in sunlight, this will initiate a photo chemical reaction in your body which will activate the formation of Vitamin D in your body.
3. Vitamin C – There was once a saying 'carry Vitamin C in gunny bags and avoid all diseases including common cold.' Vitamin C helps in formation of collagen in your body which is amajor tissue at bone joints and extra cellular space. Vitamin C is plays major role in growth and immunity. Citrus fruits (oranges, lemon), kiwi, banana, guava, most of the berries, avocado etc. are rich sources.
4. Calcium – As stated earlier calcium is required for growth and strength of vitamins. Make sure you have sufficient amounts of calcium in your diet. Food sources of Vitamin D also have rich stores of Calcium in them.
These are the major constituents that play pivotal role in enhancing and maintaining your body growth. Apart from these other factors like Vitamin B, A, K, micro minerals Zinc, Iron, Manganese etc. are also required for growth. You should have sufficient sleep as well.
Doing daily workouts will enhance the growth in your body. Make sure you follow some basic workouts daily which is also required for a healthy life.
Note that workouts that require weights (dumbbells or any other weighted exercise) may hinder your growth. Follow simple exercises that don't involve weights such as running/jogging, bar hanging, skipping, swimming, stretching exercises and certain yoga asanas. Don't stress yourself with strenuous exercises. Start as beginner and slowly increase your pace.
Apart from diet and workouts your lifestyle also effects your growth. You should have a balanced lifestyle in terms of diet, workouts, rest, relaxation and sports activities. Keep a track of your basal metabolic rate (BMI). If you are good at technology, there are certain apps for phones (android and iOS) which will keep a track of your daily activities like calories expended, amount of food you consume and the calories they have (of course you have to manually enter the type food you have consumed within the app to calculate the calories), quality of sleep, workout tracking and many more. There are smart watches like Fitbit which can do all these tracking. Explore these apps/gadgets and make daily notes. With a good diet, workouts and lifestyle you will certainly have good results. Always stay motivated and work towards your goal.
Dr. V. Shashikanth
Dr. V. Shashikanth