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Thread: Height - genes, or gene expression? How tall are your primal kids? :D

  1. #11
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
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    My family is a smattering of Europe. German, Polish, French, Swiss, British, Irish, Greek and Italian. Mom is about 5'10", dad is 6'3". I am 5'9", did is an inch taller and my two younger brothers are 6'3" and 6'5". Pretty SAD diet growing up but more home cooked meals, we didn't eat out much. Also, my tallest brother is an absolute fiend for milk but if that's the hormones talking or calcium or genes I may never know.

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  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jul 2010
    Quote Originally Posted by CaveBug View Post
    Also, my tallest brother is an absolute fiend for milk but if that's the hormones talking or calcium or genes I may never know.
    Sure. You can't know when it comes to one individual.

    AFAICT, it seems likely that a good supply of minerals (including but not limited to calcium) in the diet are important for proper growth — and not just height. I have a kind of sense — can put it no higher than that — that where there is both adequate protein (not massive amounts just enough) and plenty of calories there will be height. (C.f. modern Western countries).

    BUT … Whether there's the width with it, too — and, more generally, ideal growth all round — is another matter.

    Weston Price is particularly interesting on the New Zealand Maori. Observations at the time of early contact seem to indicate that these people, before contact with modern society and modern food, were in a near perfect state of physical health:

    The reputation of the Maori people for splendid physiques has placed them on a pedestal of perfection.
    Nutrition and Physical Degeneration: Chapter 12

    It seems to have been partly the high intake of seafood — a good source of minerals — that was responsible.

    And when the bones grow right, it seems likely the soft-tissues (as with the eye) are not impacted on adversely. Again on the NZ Maori but stated in the chapter on the Aboriginal Australians:

    The marvelous vision of these primitive people is illustrated by the fact that they can see many stars that our race cannot see. In this connection it is authoritatively recorded regarding the Maori of New Zealand that they can see the satellites of Jupiter which are only visible to the white man's eye with the aid of telescopes. These people prove that they can see the satellites by telling the man at the telescope when the eclipse of one of the stars occurs. It is said of these primitive Aborigines of Australia that they can see animals moving at a distance of a mile which ordinary white people can not see at all.
    Nutrition and Physical Degeneration: Chapter 10

    As always with Price, one is impressed with his field observations, which seem so suggestive, and equally dismayed by the fact that all this stuff that he was bringing to light seems to have fallen on deaf ears and is still mostly unknown. Was he talking to a brick wall?

    As for milk — well, yeah, difficult to tell what's going on there. Herders seem often to have been very tall. There are African peoples one could point to in this respect. Maybe this might have something to do with the blood-sugar spiking effects of milk??

    Again, maybe it's not just how tall you are but how well-balanced your physique is overall that matters. Price himself notes of the Dinka that:

    This tribe lives on the Nile. Its members are not as tall as the Neurs [Nuer]. They are physically better proportioned and have greater strength. They use fish from the Nile ...
    Nutrition and Physical Degeneration: Chapter 9
    Last edited by Lewis; 11-19-2013 at 10:51 AM.

  3. #13
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    NYC (and ATX)

    Height - genes, or gene expression? How tall are your primal kids? :D

    Parents are 5'8" and 5'7". I am 5'9". Brother (12) is my height. Sister (10) is probably 5'2" ish or a bit taller.

    Nutrition seems to matter a lot as I am taller than both my parents and my brother is going to be very tall. Parents grew up during a very poor Chinese commie period. During famines the trees' barks would be stripped clean for consumption.

    I grew up poor (first china; then poor here as parents were both grad students and at first dad couldn't get a RA position so we lived on mom's RA money) but mom tried to pull every string to feed me decent food. Brother/sister grew up average American middle class lifestyle.
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    Last edited by turquoisepassion; 11-19-2013 at 08:46 PM.
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  4. #14
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    I'm a female, right around 5' 6". My Dad is around 5'9" and my mom a mere 4'10". My mom's entire side of the family are quite short, my dad's side is average. My older brother stands at only 5'2". He was a horribly picky child and was sick a lot when he was young though, so perhaps those factors as well as genetics played a role in his short stature.

    Interestingly, he and his wife, who is also 5'2", have an 8-month-old girl who is in the 97th percentile for her height and 10th percentile for weight. Such a tall and lean little thing, but so strong and very healthy. Up until a month or two ago she was exclusively breast fed, and now has both breast milk and various fruits, veggies and a little meat. They steer clear of wheat (and so far other grains) as my SIL is gluten intolerant, and I hope for my niece's sake they keep it that way. It will be interesting to see how tall she grows up to be. I can't wait to see how tall my own future children will be growing up primal from pregnancy. Their future father is only 5'4"

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    United States
    I'm around 5'10", my father is the same height, my mother is around 5'7", sisters are in the 5'8 - 5'9" range. At 13, my brother is still growing, but from the looks of it, he will be quite tall... at least 6'1" probably. We are all very slender and visibly leaner than most people, I'm thinking this is firmly genetics taking the wheel here because all of our diets (both currently and growing up) varied a bit. Our heights are pretty normal for our ethnic group. I was a picky eater though because my limited food choices growing caused me frequent bowel troubles. I wonder had I consumed better quality food and less carbs, maybe my hips wouldn't be so narrow, my bones so oddly long, and my jaw wouldn't be as small (I had NO ROOM for wisdom teeth, so they were all extracted several years ago). My overall body shape/type is typical for women with my ethic heritage though, so I don't worry about that too much.

    My husband is around 5'9", his brother is shorter than average, as is his mother. His father is about 5'11". There are a few people in his family that a quite a bit shorter than the average of their ethnic heritage, but I'm certain that this is genetics because the everybody else is notably tall on the same SAD.

    Husband's family is of northern European mixed heritage (Nordic & Germanic), and my family all originates from a single town in West Africa. Will be interesting to see how our children turn out...I'm think the dice will roll on the very tall side regardless of diet. I am paleo, and husband currently isn't.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
    My mother is mixed European, my father was southern European. She was 5'4", he was 6'. I am 5'4", which is the US national average for women. Sometimes I see 5'5" quoted, and I can also measure at that height if I stand tall.

    My mother cooked dinner every night, and made lots of real food. We ate massive quantities of meat. I was never a fan of milk-drinking, and like my father I am lactose intolerant. I am lucky I had left home by the time my mother fell in love with fat-free low nutrition CW.

    She has shrunk a lot, possibly due to decades of dieting, skim milk, and wheat products displacing more healthy foods. My goal is to minimize shrinkage.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Calgary, AB
    I am an average height for my background, about 5'6 and 1/2". My child was conceived on a normal food diet, little junk, but no exclusions. My husband has German ancestry, and female line in his family is very tall. My child is above average height, the only kid in her class who is taller than her is a boy in the older group. Obviously, healthy, abundant diet will make children grow to their full potential. I think my child is trending towards far leaner than either myself or my husband. That might be the Primal/Paleo influence... or the fact that I limit fruit consumption for her to like under 6-8 a day, and grain consumption to once-twice a week, while having unrestricted access to vegetables and proteins. If she was growing in a normal household, she'd be filling up on crackers, pasta and cookies and would likely be as tall, but much heftier. Goes without saying that I hope she retains the body type into adulthood.
    Last edited by Leida; 11-25-2013 at 02:15 PM.
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  8. #18
    Join Date
    Feb 2013
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    My boyfriend and his ex-wife are both 5'2". She is the shortest one in her family, by far. She has celiac, which likely stunted her growth. His mother is 5' and father is 5'6". His 15 year old son towers over him, as does his ex-wife's 11 year old daughter.

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