Does rice make you shorter?

Rice has held a crucial role throughout human history. Up to now, a great variety of rice from different cuisines is available worldwide. It is the most common grain worldwide, especially in Asian countries, where the average height is relatively shorter than the rest of the world. So does rice make you shorter as many believe? Is there any direct correlation between this grain and your height?

Rice in human history

Rice has served more people than any other commodity for millennia. Rice has been used as a food source and a cultural symbol for millennia. Its cultivation began in China and expanded to Sri Lanka and India. It was after that carried on to Greece and other Mediterranean countries. Rice extended from Southern Europe to North Africa, and then was introduced to the New World from Europe. Later on, it was imported into Brazil through Portugal, and then to South and Central America from Spain.


Rice’s role in human nutrition

When consumed, rice breaks down into carbohydrates in the body, a crucial energy source for physical and mental functions. On the other hand, it also raises blood glucose levels as rice ranks a pretty significant place on the glycemic index. White rice is processed and genetically modified up to a point that it no longer has the fiber content compared to its relatives. This is due to the bran, the thin outer layer of rice grains is removed during commercial processing. Whole grain rice, in which the bran remains intact, is more beneficial than refined ones. Rice bran is the main source of fiber, B vitamins, oils, minerals, antioxidants, and protein. This is the reason why whole grains are more nutritious than processed white rice.

Rice contains mostly starch as a source of carbohydrates. Known as amylose and amylopectin, these long glucose chains make up starch. These substances are present in different quantities in different species of rice, and their presence influences the consistency of the rice. For example, basmati rice does not clump together after cooking since it contains a lot of amyloses. Low levels of amylose and high levels of amylopectin make sticky rice, also known as glutinous rice.

The body’s ability to digest rice is also impacted by these chemicals. The body requires more time to digest rice with a high amylose content because amylose decelerates starch breakdown. In comparison, sticky rice is relatively simple for the body to digest. It may be more pleasant to many individuals’ palates, but fast digestion can cause unhealthy blood sugar rises, especially in those with diabetes.

So, does rice make you shorter?

The answer is no, rice doesn’t stunt your growth as it is a good source of energy for the body. However, when you overconsume rice, it creates a nutritional imbalance in your diet, which can lead to high blood glucose levels, obesity, and some other chronic diseases. An imbalanced diet deficient in protein, vitamins, and minerals may prevent kids or teenagers from achieving their maximum height potential.

In one cup of cooked long-grain white rice (158 grams), there are 205 calories, 44.6 grams of carbohydrates which includes 0.6 grams of dietary fiber, and 4.25 grams of protein. One serving of rice consists of 15% daily value of carbohydrates, which is relatively high for such small amounts. (1) In the same case where the bran remains intact, one cup of cooked long-grain brown rice (202 grams) contains 248 calories, 51.7 grams of carbohydrates that possess 3.2 grams of dietary fiber, and 5.5 grams of protein. (2) Brown rice has more than five times the amount of fiber compared to white rice, which makes it a healthier option.

An adult’s potential height is mostly determined by genetics, however environmental variables such as the person’s food impact whether or not they will reach that potential, and a person’s stature is finalized when their growth plates shut.

As a result, although consuming rice won’t make you explicitly shorter or taller, a diet highly centered on rice and deficient in other items that promote development, such as proteins, will indirectly prevent a person from reaching their maximum height potential.

A variety of vitamins and minerals, in addition to proteins, are required to maintain optimal growth in young children and adolescents, including vitamins A, C, D, and iron. Rice has a relatively deficient vitamin and mineral profile, particularly in essential areas, with 0 grams of vitamins A, C, D, and minimal iron. As a result, in addition to low protein content, rice isn’t the ideal option for acquiring the most nutrients to encourage growth.

Elements in your diet that are vital for optimal growth



Calcium is the most critical mineral for lengthening and strengthening your bones. Dairy products, leafy green vegetables, and bread made with fortified flour are some examples of foods high in this mineral.

Vitamin D3 & vitamin K2

The majority of vitamin D3 may be found in fatty fish, although minor amounts can also be found in egg yolks, cheese, and cow liver. The osteocalcin proteins, which provide bones with calcium, are turned on by vitamin K2. By forming cartilage, both of these vitamins contribute to the stabilization of crucial elements for bone formation. They improve the body’s capability to absorb calcium and phosphorus, which contributes to a tall and powerful frame.


Along with lipids and carbs, protein is one of the three macronutrients that is crucial for optimum health. This vitamin encourages the building of lean muscle, boosts immunological function, and supports tissue growth and repair. It causes the production of hormones, enzymes, and red blood cells too.

To that purpose, each cell and tissue in the human body needs protein to operate normally. As a result, your kids require a protein-rich diet to keep their bodies at a healthy weight, develop stronger bones, and prevent unexpected diseases. This vitamin is readily found in a variety of foods, including beef, beans, nuts, eggs, and dairy products.

To sum it up

Rice alone will neither make you shorter nor higher. It is crucial to have a diverse, balanced, and healthy diet, which contains proteins, fiber, vitamins, and minerals, so your body can get all the nutrients it needs for optimal growth. It is also beneficial to create a habit of exercising and good night’s sleep.

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