Tall people have short lives?

is this true? my friend just quoted me a statistic that said people over 6’5" don’t live as long. is this true and why?

I dunno about people only six foot five. Hell, my FATHER is six foot five, and he’s as hale and hearty as ever.

I do know that once you start getting up over the seven-foot mark, you’re quite possibly in for a host of foot, muscle, knee, hip, and bone ailments that come with there being quite so much of you drawn out over such a length, particularly as you get older. Ask any basketball player.

If we don’t live as long, it’s because our lives are so much more action-packed and exciting than those of other people.

(looks around)

Aw, nuts.

I too have had this question because I don’t see very many tall people that are really over the age of 70. Then I sit and thought a little (something I try not to do too often) then realized that when people get older, their bones tend to bend more and gives them that humped over look. This would make them shorter. Also the blood has further to travel and their chances for heart failure could be greater too. I could be way off, but this is just my opinion on it.

Is Shaq doomed to die young?

Robert Wadlow, supposedly the world’s tallest man, died at age 22. Interpret that however you want.

As a counter-example, a wonderful man named Elden Auker comes into our work all the time. He’s about six and half feet tall, and used to play major league baseball. He’s 92 years old and is still very active.

I would imagine that being over 6’5" is rare enough that a high enough percentage of these people would have a medical abnormality such as Marfans syndrome or pituitary gigantism that would tend to make them die younger. Because of this it would artificially lower the statistical life expectancy of healthy people destined to be tall.

I’m 6’4"+ and am prone to extreme acts of clumsiness (banging my head on things, tripping, losing my balance). Sort of like Kramer without the laughtrack.

Maybe the high-center of gravity and clumsiness helps in knocking us trees off in higher numbers than average-sized folk, thus lowering the average age of death for tall people.


John Kenneth Galbraith is 6’7" IIRC and he’s going to be 95 this year.

I’ve also met Eldon Auker and he is indeed tall and for a man his age has incredibly good posture. Shames me, because I’m 6’5" and very slump-shouldered.

Another economist, Paul Volcker is pretty tall and he’s 75.

So there’s hope for me!

In the case of Robert Wadlow (8’11")

So his early death was related to his height, albeit indirectly.

As a past president of one of the chapters of Tall Clubs International and a man of tall stauture myself (6’ 7"), one of the causes I’ve been involved in for years is the National Marfan Foundation.

One of the symptoms of Marfan Syndrome is excessive height. That’s why Tall Clubs International has made the Marfan Foundation our major project.

Thank you dauerbach for recognizing Marfan. Several people I knew in the Tall organization had the syndrome, which is a genetic defect.

…just the opposite may be true.

Tall = longer life , Studies reveal…