Being tall may bring some benefits, but it also comes with its own unique set of disadvantages. As a result, no matter how much you love being tall there are also downsides to being so vertically blessed.
Being tall can affect almost every aspect of your life from dating and job prospects to even the clothes you wear. This is because often clothing manufacturers will produce clothes for smaller people so if you’re taller than average then finding clothes that fit well won’t be easy. Likewise, being so tall often means that you’ll tower over most people which in turn can make socializing more awkward than it needs to be.
When combined with other disadvantages of being tall such as the potential health risks then it’s easy to see why many people wouldn’t want to be as tall as they are.
Health Risks of Being Tall
While being tall is a sign of good health for most people, there are several considerations when it comes to being tall. If you’re tall, you might be at an increased risk of developing certain conditions or suffering from specific health complications related to your height.
This is because there are several risks associated with being tall. Below, we take a closer look at the potential health risks of being tall and explain why this can be detrimental to your health in some cases.
1. Risk of Cardiovascular Diseases and Diabetes
Tall people are often at a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases and diabetes, especially if they are male. These conditions are often referred to as the “diseases of affluence” because those who are generally more affluent are more likely to become diabetic and suffer from cardiovascular diseases.
That’s because people with higher socioeconomic statuses have a higher chance of developing a poor diet and lifestyle habits, such as smoking, drinking too much alcohol, or not exercising as much.
For example, being tall is associated with a larger blood volume and a lower risk of iron deficiency, which is a common cause of diabetes. If you’re tall, your cells require more oxygen and your body produces less insulin, which is a hormone that helps cells absorb sugar from the bloodstream.
As a result, you’re at a greater risk of developing cardiovascular diseases and diabetes if you have a poor diet and lifestyle.
2. Risk of Back and Shoulder Pain
People who are naturally taller than others are at a higher risk of struggling with back or shoulder pains. Your back and shoulders have to work harder to support your long limbs and the extra weight they carry.
If you’re tall, you’re likely to have long legs and arms with a relatively short torso. Your long limbs put more strain on your back, hips, and shoulders than shorter people who have shorter limbs.
You could also be more likely to develop certain musculoskeletal disorders that are common among tall people, including osteoarthritis, tennis elbow, and slipped discs.
3. Risk of Osteoarthritis and Other Joint Pains
As we grow older, our joints get weaker and the cartilage in our joints starts to wear away. This can result in pain, swelling, and stiffness in the joints. Many people can manage these symptoms throughout their lifetime, but if you happen to be unusually tall, these symptoms could be more pronounced in your joints as you age.
If you’re tall, you’re likely to have long limbs that put more stress on your joints as you get older. That’s because the cartilage in your joints shrinks over time and your bones rub against each other, causing them to become worn out.
4. Risk of Cancer
Unusually tall people have a higher risk of developing certain cancers. This is because excessive growth during childhood and adolescence can lead to an increased risk of cancer.
Exceptionally tall people have a higher risk of developing cancers of the bones and soft tissues, such as the liver, kidney, stomach, and pancreas.
You could also be at a higher risk of developing certain types of cancers that are associated with your genes, including breast, colorectal, and endometrial cancers.
5. Psychological Risks
No doubt being tall can give you a confidence boost. It can also lead to better career prospects and a more successful social life. However, research suggests that being unusually tall can increase the risk of developing certain psychological disorders.
That’s because naturally tall people can suffer from feelings of insecurity and stress related to their height. That’s because being tall can lead to feelings of being different and being judged or ridiculed by other people.
6. Risk of Osteoporosis
Tall people are at an increased risk of developing osteoporosis, a condition that causes your bones to become brittle and fracture more easily as you age.
That’s because excessive growth during childhood and adolescence can lead to an increased amount of calcium being absorbed by the bones, which makes them weaker. That’s why natural short people are actually less likely to suffer from osteoporosis as they age.
That said, tall people can reduce their risk of developing osteoporosis by following a healthy diet and lifestyle. That includes exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, drinking lots of water, and reducing your stress levels.
Other Disadvantages of Being Tall
1. It Can Be Difficult to Find Well-Fitting Clothing
Being tall is often associated with having long limbs which means that the standard clothing sizes that are made for shorter people won’t fit you.
This can make shopping for clothes an awkward and frustrating experience as you’re likely to find that most of your favorite clothes don’t fit well. This can make it difficult to find clothing that makes you look good and that you feel comfortable in as well as being more expensive than it needs to be.
Clothing manufacturers often make their clothes for the shorter population which means that if you’re tall then you’ll often have to spend more money on clothes that fit well than shorter people do.
2. Finding a Commutable Vehicle May Be Challenging
Being tall can have some unfortunate consequences when it comes to owning a car. For example, driving in a car can be very uncomfortable for someone very tall. That’s because their knees will likely be pressed up against the steering wheel.
However, the situation is even more difficult for someone very short. That’s because they may not be able to see over the steering wheel at all.
From this, it can be seen that being tall can be a real disadvantage when it comes to driving. Being tall can make it difficult to find a car that will be comfortable and safe to drive. That’s because a lot of vehicles are designed with smaller people in mind.
So if you’re tall, you’ll likely have to look for a larger and more spacious model. That said, the situation is hardly ideal. In fact, the only real solution to this problem is to look out for larger and more spacious cars.
3. Short Showers and Strain on Your Back
If you’re in a shared house with several other people then you may find that you’re constantly bumping into the shower head and knocking off shampoo bottles.
Being tall also means that you’ll often find yourself straining your back as you bend down to pick things up which can make your daily activities more painful than they need to be.
4. Disadvantages for the workplace
Being too tall can be a disadvantage for the workplace as you may find that a lot of office chairs aren’t adjustable to your size. This can mean that you have to sit crumpled up or put pressure on your knees and elbows which is likely to make your job more uncomfortable than it should be.
Being too tall may also make it more difficult for you to fit into standard-sized safety equipment which means that you may have to spend more money on gear that fits you. This can be a real disadvantage if you work in a dangerous job.
5. Disadvantages of being tall when it comes to dating
Being too tall can make it more difficult to date people as you’re often so much taller than the average person is. This can make it awkward to be with someone much shorter than you as they’ll often need to crane their neck to look at you.
Being so much taller can also set you apart from the majority of potential partners who are likely to be shorter than you. For example, if you’re 6 feet 8 inches tall then you’re unlikely to find many people who are taller than you.
Being so much taller than a potential partner can make some people feel as though you’d be more like a parent than a lover.
Being tall is often associated with being healthy and having a longer life expectancy, but it can also come with a few difficulties and health risks.
If you’re naturally tall, you may be at an increased risk of developing certain conditions or suffering from specific health complications related to your height. That’s because tall people generally have a higher blood volume, reduced blood pressure, and shorter airways, which put more stress on your organs and tissues.
One thing remains certain though: being tall is certainly better than being short. So if you’re naturally tall, don’t worry too much about your health risks. Instead, focus on adopting a healthy diet and lifestyle to reduce your health risks as much as possible.