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The Average Vietnamese Got 3cm Taller Over the Past Decade, Study Shows

Our mothers would be overjoyed to hear this.

On December 30, the Ministry of Health released the results of a country-wide study conducted by the General Statistics Office and National Institute of Nutrition on the height of Vietnamese citizens in 2019–2020, reports Tuoi Tre.

According to new statistics, the average height of a young Vietnamese male is 168.1 cm. The figure is 156.2 cm for the average Vietnamese female. Compared to a similar study in 2010, the average male height has increased by 3.7 cm from 164.4 cm, and the female height has grown by 2.6 cm from 153.6 cm.

The new heights have excited experts, who view the improvements as proof that government efforts to boost the stature of Vietnamese have been successful. Trương Hồng Sơn, a nutrition expert, told the news source that with the new height figures, Vietnam is now above average in the region, just behind Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand in average height.

Head of the National Institute of Nutrition Lê Danh Tuyên added that the survey was carried out from the end of 2019 until the beginning of 2020 on 22,000 people living across Vietnam’s regions. The respondents were all below 25 years old.

“The young adults in this study were born around the 2000s when Vietnam already had in place some interventions in nutrition and growth enrichment during the first 1,000 days of newborns, followed by other school programs to boost vitamin intake, de-worming, etc,” Sơn explained.

Rising living standards and better access to nutrients and healthcare have no doubt been significant contributing factors to the new heights, though other affluence-related illnesses are also on the rise.

Another study found that in the first half of the 2010s, obesity rates rose by 38% in Vietnam, the most in Southeast Asia and among the highest in the world. Still, the phenomenon is more prevalent in urban areas, and the national percentage of Vietnamese classified as obese is quite low compared to developed nations in the region.

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