Am I Becoming Shorter?
Loss of Height & Osteoporosis In Men
Unfortunately, you lose height as you age. You cannot avoid some of these changes, but your lifestyle choices and therapy decisions can help slow or reverse the process.
The human body is made up of fat, lean tissue (muscles and organs), bones, and water. After age 30, people tend to lose lean tissue. Your muscles, liver, kidney, and other organs may lose some of their cells. This process of muscle loss is called atrophy. Bones may lose some of their minerals and become less dense (a condition called osteopenia in the early stages and osteoporosis in the later stages). Tissue loss reduces the amount of water in your body.
The amount of body fat goes up steadily after age 30. Older people may have almost one third more fat compared to when they were younger. Fat tissue builds up toward the center of the body, including around the internal organs. However, the layer of fat under the skin gets smaller.
The tendency to become shorter occurs among all races and both sexes. Height loss is related to aging changes in the bones, muscles, and joints. People typically lose about 1 cm (almost one-half inch) every 10 years after age 40. Height loss is even more rapid after age 70. You may lose a total of 1 to 3 inches in height as you age. You can help prevent height loss by following a healthy diet, staying physically active, and preventing and treating bone loss.
Less leg muscles and stiffer joints can make moving around harder. Excess body fat and changes in body shape can affect your balance. These body changes can make falls more likely.
Changes in total body weight vary for men and woman. Men often gain weight until about age 55, and then begin to lose weight later in life. This may be related to a drop in the male sex hormone testosterone. Weight loss later in life occurs partly because fat replaces lean muscle tissue, and fat weighs less than muscle. Diet and exercise habits can play a large role in a person’s weight changes over their lifetime.
Your lifestyle choices and the therapies you choose affect how quickly the aging process takes place. Some things you can do to reduce age-related body changes are:
Eat a healthy diet that includes fruits and vegetables, whole grains, and the right amounts of healthy fats.
Limit your alcohol use.
Avoid tobacco products and illicit drugs.
Strengthen or reverse the loss of bone and muscle with Human Growth Hormone Therapy.
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