Do tall people have more health problems?

Being tall certainly has its advantages, but it also comes with its share of issues. No, I’m not talking about being asked how tall you are on a weekly basisalthough those of us over 6’4″ know just how fun that can be. I’m referring to health problems that often plague the vertically gifted.

Below are four common health problems associated with being tall, along with some solutions that can help you avoid them altogether. 

Lower back pain

Research has shown that back pain and related surgery is significantly correlated with height. This is because tall people tend to slouch more, often to interact with our surroundings that aren’t suited to our stature.

Poor posture can lead to curvature of the spine and back pain, as well as lower energy levels and reduced confidence. Yoga is one of the most effective tools for reducing lower back pain.

Blood clots

Tall people are at greater risk for venous thromboembolism or blood clotting according to a 2017 study. Possible explanations include the greater surface areas of veins, more venous valves or higher blood pressure. 

The American Heart Association recommends treating conditions that can lead to excessive blood clotting, such as diabetes and vascular diseases. They also recommend avoiding medicines that contain the female hormone, estrogen and lowering homocysteine levels if they are elevated.

Atrial fibrillation (A-fib)

Afib is defined by an irregular, often rapid heart rate that can cause poor blood circulation and can lead to blood clots, stroke, heart failure and other heart-related complications. Research published in the European Heart Journal has shown that Afib is significantly associated with increased height.

The American Heart Association recommends the following actions to reduce your risk of Afib:

  • Get regular physical activity
  • Eat a heart-healthy diet, low in salt, saturated fats, trans fats, and cholesterol
  • Manage high blood pressure
  • Avoid excessive amounts of alcohol and caffeine
  • Don’t smoke
  • Control cholesterol
  • Maintain a healthy weight


According to research published by an evolutionary biologist at the University of California, Riverside, tall people have a higher risk of cancer. Why? because of the higher number of cells in their bodies—the more cells you have, the more chances there are for those cells to mutate.

However, skin cancer has the strongest correlation to height due to the fact that IGF-1 is at higher levels in taller adults. Because the key correlation here is between height and skin cancer, the best defense is to protect your skin by using a high SPF sunscreen.

Of course, keep in mind the basics recommended by which include eating healthy, exercising, avoiding alcohol and tobacco and maintaining a healthy weight.

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