Fetal length development is very early from the first few weeks of the fetus and length reaches its peak before the 15th week of pregnancy, while fetal weight peaks at 32 weeks. to the 34th week of pregnancy. The length of the fetus is of paramount importance to the height he can reach into adulthood.
After birth, in the first year the baby’s height develops very quickly, the height of a 1 year old child is one and a half times that of the birth height, for example, at birth, the child’s length is 50cm, to 1 year the child’s length will be 75cm. From 1 year to 19 years old, children in growing stage will increase about 5cm each year on average. When it comes to pre-puberty children grow up very quickly.
The pre-puberty age of Vietnamese children is 9-11 years old for women and 12-14 years old for men. At this age, the height of girls increases by about 6cm each year and for boys is 7cm. When they reach puberty (12-13 for women and 15-16 for men), their growth slows down, increasing about 2cm each year. The next stage until the age of 25, the growth is very slow, only increasing about 1-2cm or almost no increase. The adult human body is about 23 years old for women and 25 years old for men.
Many studies show that there are many factors that affect height growth, but there are 3 main and that can affect them:
1. Nutritional factors
The role of protein (protein): protein plays an essential role in the structure of the body, especially animal proteins with a full range of essential amino acids.
Role of Calcium: Calcium is the main nutrient involved in the structure of the skeletal system, lack of calcium affects the strength and strength of the bones.
The role of lipids (fats): Fat is very important in the development of long bones in children. At the same time, the fat also helps to enhance the absorption of oil-soluble vitamins such as vitamins A, D … to help develop the bone system.
The role of micronutrients: Recent studies have shown the effect of micronutrient deficiency on malnutrition on stunting, especially the effects due to zinc and iron deficiency. , vitamin A and iodine deficiency.
2. Environmental and social factors:
Environmental and social factors have a great influence on the physical development of children, especially the development of height. Children are susceptible to stunting and malnutrition when they live a long life in underdeveloped socio-economic conditions, lack of sanitation, insufficient clean water, unsafe food, and poor quality of care.
3. Exercise and sports
Regular exercise of sports has a very good effect on the development of physical strength and enhances agility, endurance and flexibility. Many sports support good height development such as swimming, high jump, long jump, running …
Thus, all interventions aimed at improving human height need to be implemented as early as possible from the first weeks of the fetus. The process of nutrition care and health should continue to be implemented synchronously throughout the next process, from birth, breastfeeding, kindergarten age, school age, adolescence . Therefore, it has recently been recognized that a new approach is to implement early nutritional care and care for girls from school children, adolescents to pre-pregnancy.
At the same time, in the process of caring and fostering children, it is necessary to pay special attention to the key stages of height development, such as the fetal period, the first year of life and the pre-puberty period. During these periods, the effect of nutritional factors has a positive effect on height growth.