Early Puberty: Mamas, Don't Let Your Babies Grow Up to Be Short

Jeanne Sager
13

growth chartThe most wonderful thing happened at my daughter's pre-school graduation last week. She was lined up with the tall kids.

Now officially a "big kid" by virtue of her age, she is indeed a "big kid," taller even than several boys in her class.

In a week when I was reading about precocious puberty rates climbing once again, it was news that I needed to hear.

The long torso that's made dressing her impossible when combined with her minuscule waist (at 4 she could wear 24-months bottoms and 6X tops) is finally paying off.

I may be on the verge of obsession, but I have good cause.

Being short is largely acceptable for women in the U.S. The average woman is just about my height -- 5' 3.8".

However, I was raised in a family where I'm the freak rather than the norm. My female cousins are all 5' 7" and taller, my male cousins even bigger than that.

I was quite literally the runt of the litter, and I shudder to think that my daughter will suffer the same fate.

If genetics are going to play a role, there isn't much I can do. She has that long torso from my father -- who sent the tall gene my brother's way but not mine. My husband is taller than both his parents; my mom is smaller than me. She's got a one in four shot at some height.

But a host of reports have said American kids are getting shorter and fatter at the same time because of increased soda consumption and decreased calcium (and in turn, depleted bone growth). Add in the info about girls hitting puberty earlier -- and therefore not reaching their true potential adult growth -- and my silly one-upmanship with my cousins turns serious.

I worry about my daughter not because I want her to be able to reach the spice shelf above our stove -- although it would be nice -- but because I want her to retain this nice, stable rate of growth.

The newer studies are putting the blame on toxins in food and childhood obesity -- the latter of which that slim waist proves we are fending off so far -- and the BPA fear is a biggie.

I shop only for BPA-free plastics now, we say no way to soda, and we're big on her three-a-day of dairy.

What else are you doing to ensure your daughter or son is growing at a healthy rate?

 

Image via Amazon

 

Read More