1. Health
Jonathan Cluett, M.D.

Do People Actually Get Shorter Late In The Day?

By May 31, 2005

Follow me on:

Yes, it's true! The average height of a person decreases, on average, 15mm over the course of the day. This is equal to about a 1% loss of height from morning to evening.

Why does this occur. The answer is that the intervertebral discs, or spinal discs, are composed largely of water. The discs rest between the spinal bones, or vertabrae. These intervertebral disca are compressed as we stand and walk--it is our own body weight that compresses the intervertebral disc. When you sleep at night, the compressive pressure is relieved, and the discs expand again. While the difference is small, it is a fact!

Comments
January 16, 2007 at 1:37 pm
(1) clarissa says:

how can you get shorter please write me back

February 5, 2007 at 11:20 am
(2) orthopedics says:

As explained above, a small amount of our height is due to our spinal discs. Over the course of the day, these spinal discs slightly compress due to the pressure of gravity. This probably amounts to a few milimeters of height loss over the course of a day. These spinal discs then expand again when you lie down at night.

April 28, 2007 at 11:07 am
(3) Tania says:

But what do we have to do to get shorter Please write to me

August 4, 2007 at 8:07 am
(4) mohamed says:

wat to do to get shorter

February 21, 2008 at 2:01 pm
(5) singh says:

Drink tea with hardly any sugar, then when you have reached the height you want drink coffee, then you will stay the height you want to be

July 15, 2008 at 7:50 am
(6) baris says:

is this really true that you become shorter if you drink tea ???… Answer pleasee!!!!!!!!!

July 15, 2008 at 11:36 am
(7) Jonathan Cluett, MD says:

This does not have a scientific basis. There is no evidence to show that drinking tea has an effect on height.

September 10, 2008 at 4:42 pm
(8) sha sha says:

wat can i eat or drink 2 get shorter quikly

February 16, 2009 at 7:42 pm
(9) vickya says:

i am 5,9 and would love to be around 5,4. any tips on how to shrink in height would be fab!

April 14, 2009 at 2:20 pm
(10) Carlos says:

I’m only 17 and im 6’3
I need to get shorter! Please Help!
I atleast need to be 6′
But Really Need TO LOSE WEIGHT AS FAST AS POSSIBLE! Any Ideas? :’(

April 14, 2009 at 2:22 pm
(11) Carlos says:

I REALLY NEED TO LOSE WEIGHT**

(If you can help, please contact me on: s-p-o-t.light@hotmail.com as soon as possible!)

April 14, 2009 at 2:22 pm
(12) Carlos says:

I REALLY NEED TO LOSE Height**

(If you can help, please contact me on: s-p-o-t.light@hotmail.com as soon as possible!)

May 17, 2009 at 12:12 pm
(13) lalo says:

how u get shorter rite back cause i am tired being tall and maken fun at i hate being tall!
please write back

July 16, 2009 at 8:43 pm
(14) deleila says:

will i stay 5,10 im 14

August 17, 2009 at 10:26 am
(15) shorty says:

All this talk about how to get shorter, comeon, How do I get taller?

October 11, 2009 at 2:35 pm
(16) Jacky Huynh says:

I want to be shorter! I’m a 16 year old guy that’s 5’9. I want to be 5’7! I don’t want to tower anybody in my family anymore! Please tell me ways to get shorter!

October 18, 2009 at 2:16 pm
(17) Kaz says:

5’9? Tower? 5’9 is barely average height anymore…

December 27, 2009 at 9:15 am
(18) gman says:

how to get taller please write back need to know badly

January 3, 2010 at 1:09 pm
(19) tracy says:

please help mehh!! im 5’8 && im bearly 14. im tired of beung tall!!! i would love to be 5’5 but i quess its not qonna happen :(

January 27, 2010 at 9:30 pm
(20) Emma says:

i need to get shorter!!
im 5’10 and a girl
i hate being so tall
is there any way i can get shorter??

February 22, 2010 at 8:36 am
(21) whitney says:

im 19 and 6 0. ft i want mine to be 5,7 or 5, 8. but when a short person want to get tall its a information for them . but when a tall person want to get short . seem like that dont have any for tall people . some people stand up all night and you will get short or drink tea or coffec you can get short but and im not for sure i dont want to be a gaint im want to be a lil tall and a lil short . not like reaching to the sky and thats hurt me alot when isnt any information

April 29, 2010 at 5:10 am
(22) me :) says:

is there anyone who doesn’t complain about their height? just be happy how you are.

June 16, 2010 at 11:16 am
(23) arun w says:

to lose weight just diet and exercise, but you cant lose height nearly as easy

June 23, 2010 at 2:58 pm
(24) a REAL tower says:

I’m 16 too and I’m 6ft 6, how’s that? DON’T COMPLAIN ABOUT HEIGHT IF YOU’RE REALLY NOT TALL!!! AAARRGGHHH!!!

July 31, 2010 at 7:43 am
(25) Kaitlin (: says:

For guys… there is no such thing as being too tall unless you are 7 foot something and I believe someday 7 feet will be normal height for guys.

Girls right now there isn’t really anything we can do to get shorter just accept how you are because you are beautiful in your own way you just need to forget your height and look at what is beautiful about you to you.

I’m sure you would rather be 3 inches taller than everyone rather than 3 inches shorter.

August 27, 2010 at 2:37 am
(26) Kierra says:

I think u guys should just be happy the way u r bcuz im 16 and i still have to get a step stool to reach certain things trust me its not fun

November 19, 2010 at 10:50 am
(27) jennifer says:

HELP ME!!!!! im trying to get shorter for my boyfriend any tips please

December 6, 2010 at 8:17 am
(28) Shelby says:

Listen jennifer, girlfriendd you are beautiful just the way you are.and you when you smile the whole world stops and stares for a while..cause girl your amazing,just the way you are:) OOOH um sorry,im getting alittle carried away..but you get my point baby(; text me.
616.914.7074

p.s. i am a girl. i like other girls..tehehe..have a nice day!

January 14, 2011 at 9:35 am
(29) vashti says:

wow that is really cool

March 9, 2011 at 11:41 pm
(30) katie says:

stay awake and stand up longer

November 11, 2011 at 5:54 pm
(31) Cheli says:

You know funny thing bout all of u im 5′ 4″ and i wanna be 5′ 2″ but then sometimes i wanna be taller…i hear ppl say 5′ 5″ or my height is perfect…but perfect is the way we are…we were all made like this for a reason….our reason hasnt been found yet…but we have no choice but to accept and love the way we are!

November 11, 2011 at 5:58 pm
(32) Cheli says:

I am 22 and with time we learn to just live life the way we are and love every day like there is no tommorrow

November 15, 2011 at 8:56 am
(33) Bunny says:

I used to be 5’5.5″ and weighed 238. Now I’m 5’3.5″ and weigh 195. My height decreases half of an inch over the course of a day. Of course it goes back in the morning. I did have a back injury when I was 14, but the doctors said nothing is wrong. Maybe I get shorter until I finish losing weight. Tomorrow is my birthday, I’m turning 19!!

p.s. I’m shorter than both my parents and was shorter than my big sister, but let’s see where losing the other 66 pounds take me!!

February 3, 2012 at 9:56 pm
(34) Dominic says:

I’m 5″9 and want to get taller.. there is nothing wrong with being tall but there is something wrong being short, trust me.

July 25, 2012 at 5:21 pm
(35) Ari:) says:

i want to be shorter i am 5 9 and im still 11 gonna be 12 im sick of being the tall i wanna be 5 6

August 2, 2012 at 9:26 pm
(36) Vanessa says:

I have it alot worse I’m 5’11 and I’m 12 !!!! :( please I wanna get short and FAST!! Even if its just and inch or two :(

August 19, 2012 at 4:14 pm
(37) Brianna says:

So does the tea thing actually work ?I’m 15 & I’m 5’5 & I Hate Being This Tall .. I Wanna Atleast Be 5’3 . Can Y’all Give Me More Things to do to get shorter ?

November 11, 2012 at 5:24 pm
(38) amy sheperd says:

I am 14 and 5/10 i want to be 5/5 because i am taller than the other boys at my school so they are intimadated by me what do i do to gwt shorter?

January 19, 2013 at 1:35 pm
(39) chin says:

need to get shorter wat can i do?

February 9, 2013 at 3:23 am
(40) Jacob says:

I have a routine
Slouch and drop your head in your shoulders and slightly bend your knees.
DONT EAT OR DRINK CALCIUM, PHOSPHEROUS, MAGNESIUM
Put something heavy on your head occasionally.
DOnt bend your back too much.
I was 5’8 and now i’m 5’7. Please note that I am taking things too far, and I have a 50 percent chance of doing something serious with my body. It just works. I did this in 3 days. If you are seriously unhappy with your height, this is your cheapest choice. I think it’s turning into a habit and each day I want to be shorter. My goal is 5’4 becuase Simon Helberg is that height and hes my favorite actor.

April 5, 2013 at 6:49 pm
(41) joe says:

is this true jacob

April 7, 2013 at 6:20 am
(42) m says:

Im nearly 6’10 and I don’t want to be shorter and I was 17. So better get over it. Tall is better, even if you are not baskeball player.
You cannot complain until you are over 6’7.

May 5, 2013 at 3:39 pm
(43) isabel says:

I really want to become shorter in height. I’m nearly 16, 5’7 or (170 cm) tall and I want to become around 5’2 (152 cm) because I think it is so beautiful.. I feel really huge and tall although I’m kind of thin. Plz don’t tell me to love myself the way I am, because I’m honestly tired of that. I just really reallyy want to become shorter!!!! If you know tell me what to eat or do in order to get short. I’ll do anything and I’m not joking . Plz reply as soon as possible. Thank you soo much !!!

May 5, 2013 at 5:03 pm
(44) isabel says:

I forgot to ask if any of this are actually true and help to lower your height:

-eat gummy worms
-crouch a lot
- slump slouch a lot
- drink coffee and caffeine
sleep less
- or in a seated position because when your spine is in horizontal position you basically grow, when its not you don’t
- do sports
- loose weight
//?????
Thank you !

February 17, 2014 at 6:08 pm
(45) Nicky Petrillo says:

Is there a correct way to measure height. Some examiners only place bar on top of my hair. Others put rod firmly on my scalp. If its on my hair im 5’4″ and if its flat on my head I’m 63 5/8″ in height. why do different offices measure me differently. Also at what time of day do we lose most of our height. 4pm or 5pm? Or later in evening? I hope you can answer my two part question.

February 17, 2014 at 6:12 pm
(46) Nicky Petrillo says:

How late in the day would we start losing height? Is 4:30 or 5pm late enough? Or is it by evening time like 8pm or 9pm that signifies the most height loss?

February 17, 2014 at 7:56 pm
(47) Nicky says:

My question above about asking if there is a correct way to measure height was for the doctor who wrote article. Also like i asked, what time of day do we lose height most? 4:30pm,5pm,or is it late at night when our height is decreased most. I measured 63 5/8″ at around 4:30pm for a physical.

February 26, 2014 at 8:58 am
(48) Toyosi says:

I hate being tall, do sometin. I’m 20 nw n i tink i shud hav stop growing bt still feels lik am too tall

Leave a Comment

Line and paragraph breaks are automatic. Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title="">, <b>, <i>, <strike>
  1. About.com
  2. Health
  3. Orthopedics

©2014 About.com. All rights reserved.

We comply with the HONcode standard
for trustworthy health
information: verify here.