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This is how much taller Irish people have gotten in the last 100 years

New research has charted growth trends and differences across 200 countries.

20160729_Height Source: Statista

THIS CHART SHOWS how the average height of Irish people has changed over the past 100 years.

Both Irish men and women have gotten taller on average since 1914, and have gone up way up in the rankings of world’s tallest countries.

Irish men now stand at an average height of 5ft 10in (180cm), placing us 20th in terms of height out of 200 countries.

This is a jump on 5 inches from 1914, when Irish men stood at about 5ft 5 inches and occupied the 43rd place on the list.

Meanwhile, Irish women today stand at an average height of 5ft 5 inches (165cm), placing us 24th on the list of the tallest countries.

This marks a jump of about 5 inches since 1914, when women were 5ft on average and were number 43 on the list.

The figures come from research that was published this week in the eLife journal entitled A Century of Trends in Adult Human Height.

It measured the height across 200 countries of people born between 1886 and 1996.

The research found commons trends in different countries relating to height and growth over the hundred-year period.

For example, while height has gone up in all countries since 1914, some areas have only grown marginally in that time.

In in certain areas of Sub-Saharan Africa such as Uganda of Sierra Leone the height of the average man has actually gone down since the 1970s.

While genetics go some way in explaining the differences in height and growth trends across countries, researchers from the study say DNA is not the dominant factor.

“About a third of the explanation could be genes, but that doesn’t explain the change over time, lead scientist Majid Ezzati told the BBC.

Genes don’t change that fast and they don’t vary that much across the world. So changes over time and variations across the world are largely environmental. That’s at the whole population level versus for any individual whose genes clearly matter a lot.”

He said that things like good standards of healthcare, nutrition and sanitation were all key factors, as well as a mother’s health and nutrition during pregnancy.

An interactive chart of the tallest to shortest countries can be found here

Chart was made in by Statista

(Clarification: Women in 1914 were on average 5ft 0.6 inches, not 5ft 6.0 as stated in the chart)

Read: Here is why councillors don’t think taller buildings will tackle Dublin’s housing crisis

Read: Dutch men are the tallest in the world (but the Irish aren’t so short themselves)

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Cormac Fitzgerald

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