It may seem a bit unfair - but tall people all over the world seem to enjoy a higher social status in their communities, although scientists are not entirely clear why.
Regardless of your gender, it seems that an extra inch or two over your peers can help make you appear more powerful and influential, giving you a potential advantage both at work and at play.
It’s no wonder that many people are flocking in droves towards medicinal herbs such as Ashwagandha which some outlets are now reporting imbue miraculous height-increasing powers. But does it actually work?
In this article, we take a deep dive into all things height-related and the real truth about whether ashwagandha can help you grow taller.
Does Ashwagandha Increase Height?
To get straight to it - no, ashwagandha does not increase height. This is quite a dangerous myth that we'd like to dispel now - in fact, once you've finished growing as a youth, there is no miracle herb that will increase your height.
As a medicinal herb, ashwagandha is a highly-coveted adaptogen that may help relieve stress & anxiety, reduce blood sugar levels as well as cholesterol. It may also increase your testosterone levels, boost your energy levels and improve your stamina. But, there is no scientific research to suggest that ashwagandha can help increase your height.
Given the rise in dodgy producers in the market, it's crucial to conduct thorough research on the best ashwagandha supplements and purchase only from reliable suppliers. This will help ensure that you get safe and pure extracts without any harmful additives or contaminants.
What Are the Factors that Determine Your Final Height?
As a growing child or young adult, your final height is usually determined by the following factors:
Your height is mostly determined by your genes. It’s more likely that if you have tall parents, you may eventually grow to become a tall adult. At the same time, shorter ancestors can sometimes cause you to be short as well.
Getting adequate nutrition is critical to achieving your maximum height in your growing years. Growing children and young adults need to ensure they’re eating enough nutrient-dense foods.
Proteins — Eggs, lean meat, seafood, poultry, or vegetarian choices like peas, beans, soy, nuts, and seeds.
Fruits — Eat a wide range of fresh fruits as often as possible. Don’t get overly hung up on the sugar content of fresh fruit as it’s consumed with natural fibre which helps to regulate it.
Vegetables — Consume a wide variety of vegetables, the more colours, the better. again, fresh and organic vegetables are the best choice here if possible.
Grains — Choose from healthier varieties such as brown or wild white rice, whole wheat pasta or bread, quinoa, oatmeal, etc.
Dairy — Pick high-quality grass-fed options of milk, yoghurt, cheese and butter if your diet allows.
Also, make sure you limit or eliminate your intake of added sugars, salt, and foods that contain saturated fats, like burgers, hot dogs, pizzas, burritos etc.
Keep in mind - this is quite generic nutritional advice based on general principles - your unique situation may call for you to exclude certain foods. Always consult a professional when it comes to optimising your diet.
Getting enough sleep
When you sleep, your body produces hormones necessary for growth, such as growth hormones and thyroid-stimulating hormones.
If you’re not getting enough sleep during your growth phase, it can stop these hormones from working properly, preventing you from growing to your maximum height.
Maintaining a moderate exercise program, including core-strengthening and stabilizing exercises, can help contribute positively to your height. But conversely, carrying out intense exercise during the period you’re growing may sometimes negatively impact your growth rate. Ashwagandha can help with exercise endurance and muscle growth which can be a helpful contribution here.
Some types of medication
If during your growth phase, you’re using medication like stimulants or steroids, it can impact how tall you grow. Chemotherapy or radiation treatments can also have a similar effect.
Steroids — These are medicines that fight inflammation in your body. Long-term use of steroids for certain medical conditions may hinder your growth. In many cases, you can start to grow again once these medications have been stopped if you are still in a growth phase.
You always want to discuss the side effects of medications that you’re taking with your physician, especially if you need to take them for a significant length of time.
Prescription stimulants — These are medicines used to treat conditions like attention deficit hyperactivity disorder(ADHD) and narcolepsy, which can cause abnormal sleep patterns.
There is conflicting research on whether prescription stimulants cause a decrease in height. But consuming stimulants can sometimes cause side effects like the lack of an appetite, so children may find it hard to take in as much nutrition as they need.
Chemotherapy or radiation treatments — These treatments are usually used to combat cancer. They work by fighting rapidly-growing cancer cells. Sometimes, they can interfere with the hormones that help the body grow, and sometimes they affect your bone growth. Your doctor can help with medical treatments if your height is affected by chemotherapy or radiation treatments.
Certain medical conditions
Children can sometimes have growth disorders that stop them from growing at their normal rate. Sometimes, the cause can be linked to genetic disorders like Turner Syndrome, Down syndrome, and Achondroplasia.
When Do You Stop Growing?
You stop growing as a child or young adult when your growth plates which are the soft tissues at the end of your growing bones, harden and turn to bones. That’s usually when your puberty comes to an end. For girls, puberty typically ends two to three years after their period starts. For boys, puberty usually comes to an end around 17 or 18 years of age. Some people can continue to grow into their early twenties.
Can You Increase Your Height Once You’ve Stopped Growing Naturally?
Your body naturally stops growing after it attains its maximum height and no further growth is possible after this time. While limb-lengthening surgeries are available in many countries, these can pose serious health risks. You should really only consider something this drastic if your height is causing further medical issues - not because you’d like to be taller for aesthetic reasons.
As a full-grown adult, you can use alternative measures to give the visual appearance of having more height which can flow into better confidence. For example, you can wear heels or pad your shoes. You can work on improving your posture. You can also consult image specialists who can show you how to dress to impress!
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
Many of these FAQs have been answered, however, these are very commonly asked so we’ve broken them down plain and simple with no ambiguity.
Does Ashwagandha increase height after you turn 18?
Unfortunately, there is no scientific evidence or research to suggest that consuming Ashwagandha can help increase your height. Young adults can sometimes continue to grow in their early twenties until the growth plates close however, no more growth is possible after this point.
Does Ashwagandha increase height in females?
No, ashwagandha does not increase height in females or males. It’s a myth that Ashwagandha can help increase your height, whatever your gender.
How many inches of extra height can Ashwagandha give you?
None at all. There is no evidence to confirm that Aswagandha can help increase your height. There is no single vitamin, mineral, herb, or supplement that can change your height.
How much Ashwagandha should I take to increase my height?
There is no evidence to suggest that Ashwagandha will increase your height at any point in life.
What can I do to grow taller?
Unfortunately, there is no magic potion you can take to increase your height once you’ve become a fully-grown adult. Limb-lengthening surgeries are available in some circumstances, however, this procedure can pose serious health risks.
While height can have an impact on confidence and elements of your social life - it really is a minor aspect of most people's lives that shouldn’t be fixated on.
There are plenty of ways to stand out in the world beyond being ‘a bit taller’ so focus on the things you can control.
Obviously, if your height problem relates to a medical condition - this is a different matter and needs to be addressed by a qualified medical practitioner.
Ashwagandha is a brilliant ayurvedic supplement that carries many great potential health benefits - however, increasing your height does not seem to be one of them.
Your height is your height! Embrace it!