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Where In The World Are The World’s Tallest Men?

Size Matters

This graphic reveals that the tallest men in the continent actually reside in one of its smaller countries. The Netherlands has the tallest average height of 1.84m, with Germany and Sweden tied joint second, the average male height in both countries coming in at 1.81m. The Czech Republic placed third along with Finland, with an average height of 1.80m. The shortest recorded average height, 1.72m, was found in Portugal, Serbia and Romania.

The average male height in Britain is just 1.77m, or 5”10, with studies showing that the majority of men are taller than their female partners. The study of height, officially termed “auxology”, dates back to the Greeks, but the results of this infographic prove that it is alive and well today.

Country Average Height (Metres)
Netherlands 1.84m
Germany 1.81m
Sweden 1.81m
Czech Republic 1.80m
Denmark 1.80m
Finland 1.80m
Belgium 1.79m
Estonia 1.79m
Iceland 1.79m
Norway 1.79m
Spain 1.78m
Switzerland 1.78m
France 1.77m
Ireland 1.77m
United Kingdom 1.77m
Hungary 1.76m
Italy 1.76m
Bulgaria 1.75m
Greece 1.75m
Russia 1.75m
Armenia 1.74m
Turkey 1.74m
Romania 1.72m
Serbia 1.72m
Portugal 1.72m

What Do These Findings Mean?

Height is and has typically been a measure of health, the two closely correlated owing to factors like outbreak of diseases, and diet.

The study of the average male height is therefore more than just an examination of metres and centimetres. It is a glimpse into everything from living conditions to wealth and socio-economics, revealing a great deal about the lifestyle of the average men in a country.

The average male height in Europe has risen almost 11cm since the mid-19th century, up from 5”5 in 1871-75 to 5”10 in 1971-75, data reveals. This rise has been attributed to the increased availability of food, better education regarding nutrition and health and improved sanitary conditions that helped stop the spread of food-borne illnesses. Food, as it turns out, plays a large role in the height of an individual. Chao-Qiang Lai, a molecular biologist in the Jean Mayer U.S. Department of Agriculture Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging at Tufts University, reveals that roughly 60-80 per cent of the difference in individual height is attributed to genetics, with anywhere from 20-40 per cent being attributed to environmental factors, primarily nutrition.

The introduction of excessive levels of fat and sugar into our everyday diet, along with the ready availability of fast food and alcohol could be having an adverse affect on men’s health, and consequently height. When examining how the average height correlates to the average weight, it can be seen that countries with a taller average height typically tend to have lower levels of obesity. For example, as of 2011, 24 per cent of men in the UK were recorded as being obese, comparative with just 16 per cent in the Netherlands in 2008.

Looking at the male body height ten years from now, it will certainly be interesting to see if the trend between health and height continues. What do you think of the findings? Share your thoughts in the comments below!