Longitudinal Change in Height of Men and Women: Implications for Interpretation of the Body Mass Index: The Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging

Metabolism Section, Laboratory of Clinical Investigation, Intramural Research Program, Gerontology Research Center, National Institute on Aging, Baltimore, MD 21224, USA.
American Journal of Epidemiology (Impact Factor: 5.23). 12/1999; 150(9):969-77. DOI: 10.1093/oxfordjournals.aje.a010106
Source: PubMed


Age differences in height derived from cross-sectional studies can be the result of differential secular influences among the age cohorts. To determine the magnitude of height loss that accompanies aging, longitudinal studies are required. The authors studied 2,084 men and women aged 17-94 years enrolled from 1958 to 1993 in the Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging, Baltimore, Maryland. On average, men's height was measured nine times during 15 years and women's height five times during 9 years. The rate of decrease in height was greater for women than for men. For both sexes, height loss began at about age 30 years and accelerated with increasing age. Cumulative height loss from age 30 to 70 years averaged about 3 cm for men and 5 cm for women; by age 80 years, it increased to 5 cm for men and 8 cm for women. This degree of height loss would account for an "artifactual" increase in body mass index of approximately 0.7 kg/m2 for men and 1.6 kg/m2 for women by age 70 years that increases to 1.4 and 2.6 kg/m2, respectively, by age 80 years. True height loss with aging must be taken into account when height (or indexes based on height) is used in physiologic or clinical studies.

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Available from: John Sorkin, Aug 06, 2014
    • "Men who appeared to be 42 years old were perceived to be somewhat shorter than men who appeared to be 25 years old. It is possible that people may associate older age with a decline in stature as height loss in men begins at around age 30 (Sorkin et al., 1999). These results confirm the hypothesis that there is an inverted-U relationship between perceived height and age. Figure 5. Diagram depicting how masculinity mediates the effect of height and age on dominance. "
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    ABSTRACT: Several studies have examined the individual effects of facial cues to height, masculinity, and age on interpersonal interactions and partner preferences. We know much less about the influence of these traits on each other. We, therefore, examined how facial cues to height, masculinity, and age influence perceptions of each other and found significant overlap. This suggests that studies investigating the effects of one of these traits in isolation may need to account for the influence of the other two traits. Additionally, there is inconsistent evidence on how each of these three facial traits affects dominance. We, therefore, investigated how varying such traits influences perceptions of dominance in male faces. We found that increases in perceived height, masculinity, and age (up to 35 years) all increased facial dominance. Our results may reflect perceptual generalizations from sex differences as men are on average taller, more dominant, and age faster than women. Furthermore, we found that the influences of height and age on perceptions of dominance are mediated by masculinity. These results give us a better understanding of the facial characteristics that convey the appearance of dominance, a trait that is linked to a wealth of real-world outcomes.
    Perception 08/2015; 44(11). DOI:10.1177/0301006615596898 · 0.91 Impact Factor
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    • "For women over 90 the BMI values are significantly lower, which corresponds with data published by other authors [32-34]. There are statistically significant differences in height for the group of elderly women and the long-lived group who is characterized with the lowest values of this trait (P <0.05). "
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    ABSTRACT: Background The study of aging processes and the changes in morphological, physiological, and functional characteristics that are associated with aging is of great interest not only for researchers, but also for the general public. The aim of the present paper is to study the biological age and tempos of aging in women older than 60 years, including long-lived females (over 90-years-old), and their associations with morphofunctional characteristics. Results Somatic traits, body mass components, and functional characteristics were investigated in 119 elderly (between 60 and 74-years-old) and long-lived (over 90-years-old) women in Tiraspol. With the special PC software ‘Diagnostics of Aging: BioAge’ (National Gerontological Center, Moscow, Russia) the biological age and tempos of aging were evaluated in the study participants. The results show close connections between morphofunctional changes, particularly in body mass components, and biological age. The software demonstrated its validity in the estimation of biological age in the group of elderly women. In the homogenous (according to their chronological age) group of women, three subgroups were separated with different tempos of aging: those with lower rates of aging (biological age less than chronological age by two years or more); those consistent with their chronological age, and those with accelerated tempos of aging (biological age higher than chronological age by two years or more). Conclusions Morphofunctional characteristics in the studied groups of women demonstrate the trends of age-involutive changes which can be traced through all groups, from those with slow rates of aging, to those with average rates, to those with accelerated tempos of aging, and finally in long-lived women. The results of comparative analysis show that women with accelerated aging are characterized with such traits as lower skeletal muscle mass, lower hand grip strength, and higher metabolic rate. Canonical discriminant analysis revealed a number of morphofunctional characteristics which differentiate the early-aging women from women with average rates of aging: higher BMI values, excessive fat mass, lower skeletal muscle mass and low values of hand grip strength. Thus the presence of such characteristics in elderly women can be considered as additional risk factor towards the early onset of the aging process.
    Journal of PHYSIOLOGICAL ANTHROPOLOGY 05/2014; 33(1):12. DOI:10.1186/1880-6805-33-12 · 1.27 Impact Factor
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    • "These changes can be seen in variations in body composition after middle age,5 through the increase of FM, reduction in LBM,6,7 and through the loss of height due to compression of the vertebrae and progressive curvature of the back.8 Consequently, another deterioration has been identified from the age of approximately 65 to 75–80,9 where the loss of muscle mass becomes 25%.10 "
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to examine the differences in anthropometric measurements using an aerobic and Pilates exercise program which lasted 24 weeks. This was a clinical intervention study of 303 women over the age of 60 living in Novi Sad, Serbia. Changes in body mass index and skinfold thickness were estimated through height, weight, and anthropometric measurements. The program comprised Pilates exercises for upper- and lower-body strength, agility, and aerobic capacity. Fat mass (FM) improved significantly (pre-test, 32.89%, 8.65; post-test, 28.25%, 6.58; P<0.01). Bone diameters and muscle perimeters showed no significant changes pre- and post-test (P>0.05), but there was a higher correlation between FM (%) and waist-hip ratio (rho, 0.80; P<0.01). A mixed program of aerobics and Pilates, controls and improves baseline muscle mass and decreases FM values, without causing deterioration during practice and follow-up exercises.
    Clinical Interventions in Aging 01/2014; 9(9):243-8. DOI:10.2147/CIA.S52077 · 2.08 Impact Factor
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