Many people become concerned if their child is not growing at a rate similar to his or her peers. Other parents are concerned because their child has either stopped growing or his or her growth rate is considerably less. On average, a child grows around two inches per year before the onset of puberty. Most girls have reached their maximum height by the age of 16, while most boys reach their maximum height by the age of 18. However, growth can continue until the growth plates are fused at around age 24. Each person’s maximum height potential is decided mostly by genetics; however, environment can play a key role in whether or not your child reaches his or her maximum height potential. Whether or not to consider herbal treatments or growth hormone treatments is up to a child’s parents and doctor, but there are some natural, perfectly safe and healthy things that you can do to not only increase your child’s height; but also, to increase your child’s overall health.
Everyone has heard the age-old instruction to make sure that your kids get enough calcium to ensure strong bones; however, calcium can help your child grow as well. Obviously, milk is an excellent source of calcium; however, cheese, yogurt, broccoli, and sardines are also good sources of calcium. It is recommended that a child ages one to three gets 500 mg of calcium per day, which equals about two glasses of milk. It is also recommended that a child age four to eight gets about 800 mg of calcium per day, which equals about three glasses of milk. Finally, it is recommended that a child age nine to 18 gets about 1,300 mg of calcium per day, which equals about four glasses of milk. You should also make sure that your child gets enough protein. Ensure that your child is getting at least 19 grams of protein a day if he or she is under the age of nine, and at least 34 grams of protein if he or she is over the age of nine. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and ensuring that your child gets the proper amount of amino acids will ensure that he or she will be able to build all of the needed proteins for good growth.
We have all heard that a good night’s sleep is crucial for a child’s health, but it is also crucial for a child’s growth. A child’s body produces the most amounts of growth hormone during sleep. If a child is not getting enough sleep, or his or her sleep is interrupted frequently, he or she might not be growing to his or her maximum potential. It is recommended that a child aged five to eight gets around ten hours of sleep, and a child from eight up to 18 gets between 8.5 and 9.5 hours of sleep a night. This amount of uninterrupted sleep a night is crucial for helping your child reach his or her maximum height potential. It is also recommended that you keep your child’s sheets and blankets loose, so that he or she can move freely throughout the night. One of the reasons that a lot of growth happens at night is that the body is unimpeded when lying down, so make sure that your child’s body is not confined during sleep.
Exercise is also essential in helping your child grow taller. The most important exercises that your child needs to be doing, in order to meet his or her maximum growth potential, are stretches. One good way to have your child stretch is to have him or her stand with his or her back against the wall, and reach up as high as possible and hold that pose. Another good way to stretch is toe touches – both standing and sitting. Also, you can have your child sit with his or her legs in a ‘V’ shape, and then lean down to touch each toe. An excellent way to have your child stretch daily is to have him or her do yoga every day. Finally, another excellent way to stretch out the spine and the muscles is hanging. Have your child do chin-ups, hang from a bar using his or her hands, or hang upside-down from a bar using his or her knees. All of these will help elongate the vertebrae in the spine, relieve compression of vertebrae, and stretch muscles. Stretching is not the only exercise you should have your child do, however. Other forms of exercise, such as swimming, sports, running, and biking, can help your child’s muscles develop and stretch – as well as promote growth hormone production. If your child is under the age of 16; however, it is not recommended that you have your child lift weights. This can actually impede growth.
One final thing that you can do to ensure that your child reaches his or her maximum height potential is make sure that he or she maintains excellent posture when standing or sitting. Slouching can make your child develop a curved spine, as well as compress the vertebrae. Good posture helps your child stretch out the vertebrae. It also helps your child develop a straight spine. Teach your child to identify when he or she is slouching and to fix the problem when it is identified.
It is a common myth that having short parents automatically dooms a child to being short. Although genetics is a large factor in determining a child’s final height, as well as when in a child’s development he or she will grow the most, there are safe and natural ways to ensure to help your child grow taller. The natural by-product of following these methods is that your child will also be healthier and have more energy. If you really want your child to reach his or her maximum height potential, following these simple methods in a no-lose situation!