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Aim: To report findings from various sources indicating that smaller sized humans live longer.
Study Design: Collected mortality and longevity data from a variety of diverse studies involving animals and humans. Also collected longevity data from many nations and ethnic groups. Evaluated a broad range of biological parameters that may explain why smaller people live longer.
Methodology: Over 145 mortality, life expectancy, and longevity studies were evaluated based on over 5000 papers, reports, and books collected over the last 35 years. Thirty studies were selected for this mini review to provide a balanced variety of findings.
Results: Evidence was collected on eight different types of studies. For example, studies were found showing smaller body size is related to greater longevity within the same species. Other studies involved longevity in relation to caloric restriction, male-female height differences, and US ethnic group heights. Other data sources indicated that shorter developed populations have longer life expectancies compared to the tallest populations. Longevity studies showed that shorter people lived longer. Worldwide, centenarians were also found to be short and lean based on their military heights or when adult heights were adjusted for shrinkage. A list of 11 biological factors identified why shorter, lighter bodies survive longer.
Conclusions: The evidence indicates that shorter, smaller bodies are healthier and longer-lived when healthful nutrition and lifestyles are followed. Therefore, emphasizing physical growth is unwarranted when children are healthy. Reduced caloric and animal consumption can provide a path for better health and avoidance of chronic disease.