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Portuguese men and women “are getting taller”, says study

It is not a surprise, but the numbers are impressive. In the last 100 years, Portuguese men have gained, on average, 13.9cm, while Portuguese women have grown, again on average, by 12.5cm.

The findings comes from an international study which analysed the height of 18.6 million people in 200 countries, born between 1896 and 1996.

The research showed that the tallest people in the world are Dutch men (measuring an average of 182.5cm) and Latvian women (169.8cm).

But Portuguese counterparts have made leaps and strides.

In 1914, for example, the average height for men here was only 159cm.

With the last averages taken in 2014 (172.9cm), the data shows that these days Portuguese women are on average taller than men were 100 years ago.

Measuring just 150.5cm on average in 1914, Portuguese women are now nudging the measuring sticks at 163cm.

But it still leaves us at 75th position worldwide with many more ‘notable’ results peppering the findings, published in eLife scientific magazine.

What is interesting among the more predictable conclusions is that “greater height is associated with certain types of cancers such as colon, breast and ovarian cancers”.

For the full report on “A century of trends in adult human height”, see: http://lens.elifesciences.org/13410/index.html

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com