Monthly Archives: January 2014

Could meditation affect height related genes?

Previously, scientific studies have shown that meditation could affect free radical levels and biophoton emissions.  There have been a few studies on meditation and it’s affects on gene expression but no genes seemed to be altered that could increase height during development or reinstate height growth in adults.

Rapid changes in histone deacetylases and inflammatory gene expression in expert meditators

“Here we explored the impact of a day of intensive practice of mindfulness meditation in experienced subjects (n = 19) on the expression of circadian, chromatin modulatory and inflammatory genes in peripheral blood mononuclear cells (PBMC){Ideally we’d like gene expression of the growth plate and bone marrow but this could give us some insight if meditation can alter any genes involved in development processes}. In parallel, we analyzed a control group of subjects with no meditation experience who engaged in leisure activities in the same environment (n = 21). PBMC from all participants were obtained before (t1) and after (t2) the intervention (t2 − t1 = 8 h) and gene expression was analyzed. Both groups were also presented with the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST).
Core clock gene expression at baseline (t1) was similar between groups and their rhythmicity was not influenced in meditators by the intensive day of practice. Similarly, we found that all the epigenetic regulatory enzymes and inflammatory genes analyzed exhibited similar basal expression levels in the two groups. In contrast, after the brief intervention we detected reduced expression of histone deacetylase genes (HDAC 2, 3 and 9), alterations in global modification of histones (H4ac; H3K4me3) and decreased expression of pro-inflammatory genes (RIPK2 and COX2) in meditators compared with controls. We found that the expression of RIPK2 and HDAC2 genes was associated with a faster cortisol recovery to the TSST in both groups.”

HDAC2 binds to the cartilage promotor Sox9 which is a height increase link there.  Although it is not necessarily a positive binding as HDAC2 did repress some cartilage specific genes like Col2a1 in one study.  Since Meditation reduces HDAC2 expression that could be beneficial to height growth.

H3K4me3 is associated with gene activation.  Thus raising the possibility that meditation alters genes other than those listed.  Jeffrey Baron thinks that declining H3K4me3 levels are associated with declining organ growth with ageElevated levels of H3K4me3 is associated with chondrogenesis.

“Increased telomerase activity was detected in response [to yogic meditation]”

” Rapid epigenetic changes in response to environmental exposures such as diet and physical exercise have also been detected in human peripheral tissues”

It seems with the genes above mentioned, that meditation has the ability to accelerate but not induce or increase chondrogenesis.  So, you’ll grow taller faster but not taller than you would have.
Meditation would accelerate growth by inhibiting HDAC2 which supresses chondrogenesis.  The elevated levels of H3K4me3 could be a sign of increased gene activation but it’s not likely that H3K4me3 is driving the gene activation.  Whether meditation can activate growth plate inducer genes or genes that enhance growth remains to be seen.


Could pulling your fingers make them longer?

Even if you could grow taller via your articular cartilage, it’s likely that the periosteum would constrain additional growth.  Note the studies that shows that articular cartilage longitudinal growth can continue in bones without periosteum such as the fingers.

By mimicing the effects of the bite-jumping device on the mandible and the way it increases growth in that region it could be possible to increase in the same way in the fingers by pulling on them.

Repeated mechanical loading enhances the expression of Indian hedgehog in condylar cartilage.

Indian hedgehog (Ihh) acts as a mechanotransduction mediator that converts mechanical strain into cellular proliferation and cartilage formation in mandibular condylar cartilage{But could Ihh act as a signal to induce mesenchymal stem cell differentiation into chondrocytes?  Ihh has been shown in some instances to be a chondrogenic inducer of mesenchymal stem cells.}. The aim of this study was to examine the effect of repeated mechanical strain on the level of expression of Ihh and type II collagen mRNA in condylar growth. Two hundred and eighty 35 days old Sprague-Dawley rats were divided into 10 experimental and 10 control groups. Repeated mechanical loading was applied by advancing the mandible in a stepwise manner by fitting a stepwise bite jumping appliance{Bite jumping devices have been shown to induce adaptations in 135 day old rats(almost five months old), this bite jumping device was explained as reactivating endochondral ossification in the old rat condyle}. Animals were sacrificed together with their matched controls on 10 different time points. Total RNA was extracted from condylar cartilage immediately after dissection. Ihh and type II collagen mRNA was quantified. In the experimental group, Ihh mRNA increased significantly on experimental day 7. Upon the second advancement, another peak was elicited 7 days later. Type II collagen showed a significant increase on days 21 and 44 of advancement. Mechanical loading in a repeated manner, triggers the expression of Ihh which in turn increases the number of replicating mesenchymal cells as well as the amount of the cartilage formed. Taken together these events increase condylar growth.”

Here’s what a bite jumping appliance looks like:

bite jumping applianceHere’s more info on the bite jumping device.  This device seem like it would place a distraction force on the bone and cartilage.

“Mandibular forward positioning led to changes in the biophysical environment that caused deformation of the mesenchymal cells and other cells in the extra-cellular matrix. Thus create strain alignment that causes deformation of the cytoskeleton of these cells and trigger the expression of Ihh. The expression of Ihh elicited by mechanical loading of the mandibular joint promoted mesenchymal cell proliferation and initiated a cascade of cellular and molecular responses that led to condylar growth”

“Mechanical stress stimulated Ihh expression in chondrocytes in vitro by 18-fold. Over expression of Ihh in transgenic mice led to an increase in the number of replicating chondrocytes in the growth plate”

“the number of replicating mesenchymal cells in the condyle directly impacts the growth potential of the condyle. Furthermore, the number of replicating chondrocytes impacts the amount of cartilage to be formed and subsequently influences condylar growth because cartilage acts as the template onto which bone will form. Therefore, over expression of Ihh in the condylar cartilage in response to mechanical loading could result in enhanced condylar growth. ”

“Ihh mRNA expression showed a decrease with age during natural growth. Forward mandibular positioning led to a significant increase of Ihh mRNA, with the peak identified on day 7 and dropped to control level after 14 days of appliance wearing. The peak increment corresponded to a fold change of 5 in the stepwise advancement group. ”

“Upon the second advancement on experimental day 30, Ihh mRNA showed a significant increase on experimental day 33 and reached another peak on experimental day 37, which has a corresponding fold change of 12.5. After the peak, the level of expression started to decrease again to the normal level. ”

“In the experimental group, collagen II mRNA started to increase on days 14. Although the critical values were statistically insignificant when compared with the control, a greater amount of mRNA was detected on experimental days 14 and 21. The fold change identified was 2.5 and 2.8 respectively.  The second advancement on days 30 led to a significant increase in type II collagen mRNA, which reached the peak on days 51 with a fold change of 21.8. The amounts of mRNA detected on experimental days 44 and 51 were significant when compared with natural growth. ”

The first mandibular advancement was by 2mm.  It would be interesting to measure any temporary change in leg length during LSJL.  The second advancement was also by 2mm.

Factors regulating condylar cartilage growth under repeated load application.

“280 Sprague-Dawley rats were used in this experiment. The animals were randomly allocated into experimental and control groups. Repeated mechanical loading was applied through a bite-jumping device in the experimental group. The experimental animals were sacrificed on 10 different time points together with the matched control. Total RNA was extracted from the mandibular condylar cartilage for PTHrP and SOX9 genes quantification using real-time RTPCR. PTHrP expression was increased and reached a peak level on the seventh day after mechanical loading was given. Repeated mechanical loading triggered a significant increase of PTHrP expression leading to another peak increment. The expression of SOX9 was highly correlated with the PTHrP expression, and its pattern of expression was similar to that of PTHrP after repeated mechanical loading. In conclusions, repeated mechanical loading on the condyle triggers the expression of PTHrP and SOX9, which in turn promotes condylar cartilage growth.”

“The set-up involves an intra-oral [bite-jumping] device that positions the mandible forward, therefore, generating tension at the condyle and the glenoid fossa. ”

“t mechanical loading led to a significant increase in the expression of PTHrP, which delayed cartilage cells maturation and endowed the condyle with more potential to buildup cartilage. This increase in PTHrP was associated with the increase of new chondrocyte populations. Furthermore, it was documented that PTHrP up-regulated SOX9 transcription, which has been shown to promote differentiation of mesenchymal cells into chondroblasts in the mandibular condyle. It is convincible that repeated mechanical load applications through mandibular advancement in a stepwise manner could re-trigger the expression of these factors and lead to further growth.“<-there does seem to be periosteum in the mandible so it could mean regions with periosteum can be stretched via increased articular cartilage growth.

“PTHrP also up-regulates the expression of SOX9, which in turn acts upon the mesenchymal cells, and induces their differentiation into chondrogenic cells. ”

Note that some bones you can pull thereby immediately increasing the length of the skeleton examples include the wrist, fingers, and jaw.  Pull your finger and make it instantly longer but this seems far more difficult with the elbows and knees but perhaps still possible.

This would be a possible experiment to do on a finger.  There could be a device that pulls the finger away from the hand.  Would it be safe and healthy to the hand to do this for a long period of time?  There’s already a multitude of anecdotal evidence of intermittant tensile on the hand via knuckle cracking.  Although that could be more of a bending force rather than a pure longitudinal stretching one.  But I know that some people crack their knuckles by pulling them.

Does anyone have any anecdotal advancement of people with longer hands due to cracking their knuckles by pulling on their fingers?

In addition, any exercise like deadlifts and farmer’s walk would put a pulling force on the arms.  Does anyone have any anecdotal evidence of people getting longer arms by doing farmer’s walks?

Do Bisphosphonates decrease height?

The bisphophonate Aldronate reduces height.  Other bisphophantes such as zoledronate have an impact on the growth plate and may have an impact on height.  I don’t know for sure what affect bisphophonates have on height but if I had to guess I would say that they result in decreased height.

Effect of Bisphosphonates on the Rapidly Growing Male Murine Skeleton

“C57Bl6/J male mice were treated from 18 to 38 days of age with vehicle, alendronate, pamidronate, zoledronate or clodronate at doses selected to replicate those used in humans. Treatment with alendronate, pamidronate and zoledronate, but not clodronate led to a decrease in the number of chondrocytes per column in the hypertrophic chondrocyte layer. This was not associated with altered hypertrophic chondrocyte apoptosis or vascular invasion at the growth plate.

The effects of pamidronate on trabecular microarchitecture were less beneficial than those of alendronate and zoledronate. Pamidronate did not increase cortical thickness or cortical area/total area relative to control mice. These studies suggest that bisphosphonate administration does not adversely affect skeletal growth.”

“Technicium, 99mTc-labeled 1-hydroxy-methyledene bisphosphonate, a compound closely related to clodronate, is used for bone scans. In children and growing animals, this agent is avidly taken up in the region of the growth plate where cartilage is being replaced by bone”

“first generation bisphosphonates (ethane-1-hydroxy-1,1-diphosphonate and dichloromethylene diphsophonate), performed in growing rats more than four decades ago, demonstrated expansion of the growth plate and persistence of columns of calcified cartilage”<-note that expansion of the growth plate does not always lead to increased height.

“Pamidronate decreases basal ERK1/2 phosphorylation in hypertrophic chondrocytes”<-other bisphosphonates did not alter ERK1/2 phosphorylation.

“Treatment of hypertrophic chondrocytes with phosphate leads to rapid phosphorylation of Erk1/2 which is required for phosphate-mediated hypertrophic chondrocyte apoptosis”

“Bisphosphonates do not impair hypertrophic chondrocyte apoptosis in vivo”<-although the pamidronate group had a slight increase in hypertrophic chondrocyte apoptosis.

“zoledronate suppresses MMP-9 expression, whereas pamidronate increases MMP-9 mRNA
levels in cells of the monocyte/macrophage lineage, and clodronate has no effect”

“The number of osteoclasts in this region [metaphysis] (350 microns) was significantly decreased in the mice treated with alendronate and zoledronate relative to control mice (2.3  and 3.3 respectively vs 7.5 in control mice). Pamidronate and clodronate treatment resulted in a small and insignificant decrease in cortical osteoclasts in this region relative to control animals (6.0 and 7.0 respectively).”

“Femoral length did not differ between control and treated mice, nor among treatment groups(data not shown).”<-This is unfortunate as any non-signficiant difference in femur length could be notable.

“the non-nitrogen containing bisphosphonate, clodronate, did not alter the number of hypertrophic chondrocytes per column and led to fewer growth plate changes than the nitrogen-containing bisphosphonates.”

Heightism is Not a Social Construct but an Irrepressible Bias Based on Natural Instinct

Heightism is Not a Social Construct but an Irrepressible Bias Based on Natural Instinct

HeightismI am probably going to be tarred and feather for this claim by certain people but I will make just one claim which is this, the socio-anthropological term “heightism” is not a social construct but an irrepressible bias based on natural instinct.

This claim I am making would go directly against many people who might be below average in height of the overall group that they are in. To defend their own self image of their worth as a human being, they would obviously reject that concept and counterclaim that heightism is a social construct.

I was recently looking at the website traffic that is coming to this website and noticed that a few Reddit threads were linking back to this website. It seems that some people in the Short category were using a few older posts to validate some point they were trying to make about the science of height and growth. It is something that is created by the individuals of a specific culture to be biased against and ridicule the shorter individuals of the society, most specifically the male members. I had to disagree. (The thread was titled Heightism and Height Scams“)

One person who commented made the exact quote that heightism is a social construct. That person calls himself Goefrrey. Only recently did I found out about the 1000+ post tumbler website started by a him (Geoffrey Arnold). He wrote two short pieces called “Is Height Discrimination Natural?” and “Heightism is a Social Construct based in Gender Norms

Why I think Heightism is an Unconscious Natural Instinct

If heightism was indeed some type of social construct, wouldn’t it then be a social phenomena that is prevalent in only certain countries and cultures. So far I have not met one single culture or society which had the opposite opinion, which is that the smaller percentage people of a society is better looking. Can you name one culture that does that?

If 99% of the people in a culture believes in something, doesn’t that sort of imply that it might be real? Of course, we could counter that argument with the curious case of North Korea. It is believed that maybe 98-99% of all the people in North Korea believes that Kim Il Sung is a real god and their national hero which they go crazy for. If 99% of the people in that small nation and society believes that he is (or was) a type of deity, does that mean that he is a god? They have no connection to the other countries outside of it. They don’t know better. Based on lack of knowledge which is the result of bad luck in the genetic lottery for being born in the country of North Korea and its regime in the last 60 years, the political state and the person desires of one despotic dictator might have the power to override even some basic natural laws. Maybe the late Kim Jong Il might have some ability to remove the thinking of almost everyone in his society. Maybe at some point due to his own inferior complex of short height, he made some crazy decree that smaller height people (around his height of probably 5′ 2″ ) was the best height. To align the malnutrition problem and stunted growth problem with national pride, he just might have the ability to convert the majority’s peoples mind to believe that being shorter is better than being taller.

We are aware of the other Communist Regimen, of the People’s Republic of China. For about 10-20 years during national zealot on the need to establish equality for all people, there was a time when being too tall was considered a bad thing. If you were taller than your peers, it was an indication that maybe you were trying to show off to other people even when you are not trying to. Based on communist principles of requiring everyone to be more or less equal, naturally growing up taller would have been frowned upon.

Then again, I think at this point we can say that the natural tendency of human beings is to shift towards capitalist societies, not communist societies. Throughout history, there has always been inequality of some form or another. The most blatant example of inequality is economic inequality. Over time, there will always be a few people in the minority which have the right combination of intelligence, drive, worth ethic, and luck to push them to the higher echelon of their respective societies.

Due to the way that human societies over time are almost guaranteed to drift into a society of divided classes with capitalism working its invisible hand (as stated by Adam Smith in his Wealth of Nations book), and also  based on the human will to strive, succeed, and become greedy, as well as to hoard their wealth and not wanting to share the wealth they had accumulated over the years of hard work with other people who chose not to put in as much effort or was lazy, it would make sense that the communistic ideal would never work. It is unnatural.

Only communist societies would ever try to negate and reprogram a human to believe that taller is not better. Of course we have sort of proved based on the negative, non-altruistic tendencies in the dark recesses of the human psyche, that communism can never work in the long run since they run counter to what we are naturally responsive to. That means that left on its own to make up its own judgements and thoughts about how the world and nature works,  the human mind to go back to its default embedded programming from over million years of evolution, the majority of every society will believe that being taller is better than being shorter (if of course you manage to hold all the other factors and parameter in the system you are analyzing constant)

The Case Based on The Distribution & Prevalence of Heightism

Heightism is more than just an American (USA), Canadian, Australian, or European social convention. In my own travels throughout the Western Modern world and then traveling to the countries to the East, Asia, Japan, South Korea, and China, every single nation and culture seems to prize tall stature and believe that taller people are better looking. Give a survey to 100 young females on what the height standard they would want in a male partner and probably 90-95% of them would want the male companion to be in the taller group from simple classifications and categorizations.

I have written at least 3-4 post before showing just how much effort people of these East Asian countries are putting to make themselves taller or trying to make their own children slightly taller. We might be tempted to ask whether something like height is something worth putting so much of their mental energy and effort. We could argue that unlike suffering some type of medical disorder which might inflict great pain through the body, being not as tall we other people would not cause any type of real physical pain to the individual.

Based on the competitiveness of the world, and how many people are in this world, it is almost a sort of given that people are going to want to express their own individuality and uniqueness by comparing themselves to others to find something about themselves which sets them apart from others in a positive way. One of the easiest ways to show that one is (supposedly) intrinsically better than another person is comparing whose top of the head is further away from the level ground which they both stand on. Remember that no matter where we go on this planet, there is a downward force called gravity pushing every single cell in our body downwards. Our measured height is a way for the individual organism to pronounce their rejection in being pushed down into the dirt/ground by this most fundamental of universal forces.

It might be argued that the anthropometric measurement is sort of arbitrary and that measuring the top of one’s head (or cranial bone) to the feet is a very strange human derived concept. Maybe height is just a word we use to describe a measurement that doesn’t really translate into any type of real benefit for any average person living their life. If both of the people use the same measuring stick or standard, then a comparison of two human beings can be done. However, we have seen already that stunted growth is a result of some illness or disorder. Whereas there are hundreds of different types of diseases that can cause the person to become shorter and develop stunted growth, there is a very few diseases that makes a person become taller than average or develop an accelerated rate of growth. Most anthropologists with ecologists have agreed that the best indicator of a country’s overall health is from looking at their average height. Apparently the height of a country is a very good indicator on the overall health of the people living there. This shows that increased height does have a real correlation to an increase in the increase of the quality of life, as least for a nation overall. The people living in Sweden have a better quality of life than the people of say China and is obvious from looking at the height differences in the two countries.

We as a species realize that a lot of our emotional and mental energy and suffering is caused from constantly comparing ourselves to other people. Being tall or rich or beautiful is a concept that is based on relativity. Being 6 feet tall in India is big but in Norway it is just average. Making $100,000 a year in the Philippines makes you rich but to do that in Singapore makes you vey average. However, we hope that the reader understands the principle of relativity. The unique way that people judge their own place in the world is not based on absolute standards, but relative standards which can change (increase and decrease) over time.

This is not just some type of American and East Asian phenomena. The largest demographic to this website is from the countries of India and Philippines. I get bombarded by messages everyday from hundreds of young Indian and Filipino teenagers asking me how to help become taller. One of the most popular posts I have ever written which has gotten the most comments and shares was the review on the Gloxi Height Enhancer Drink (Read the review here). Gloxi has been something that has been advertised on TV in the Philippines as a height increase drink for years but the local Filipinos don’t realize that the drink is made in Taiwan. I found it absolutely despicable that people of one Asian countries would manufacture an obviously useless drink to another Asian country to take advantage of their ethnic features. Probably some guy in East Asia realized that the people in Southeast Asia were of a shorter height than them and were not internet savy yet so they used the people’s ignorance of science to get them to buy strange drinks which promises a dream which can never come true. It seems that this belief in tall stature being better is a social phenomena that is experience throughout the entire continent of Asia.

Hutu and TutsiSo what about africa? I am reminded of the genocide that happened in Rwanda between the Hutus and the Tutsis. It seems that the two different groups of ethnicities which lived in the same geopolitical state which we call a country or nation were of a bipolar distribution of heights. The Hutus were the majority and the Tutsi were the minority. They spoke the same language and lived next to each other. The only difference were in the body sizes. From the BBC News article I quote the following “…Tutsis are often taller and thinner than Hutus, with some saying their origins lie in Ethiopia”. Apparently when the Belgians first came over for colonialism, they decided to classify the ethnic tribes. By some default reasons, they just decided to say that the Tutsis were the better of the two ethnicities, with no real reason except that they were taller in body size. Obviously that Tutsis were happy with it and they got many different economic privileges for decades until the Hutus became very resentful of the differences. The picture to the right was found from the blog post “The Hutu’s and the Tutsi’s and Belgium Stereotyping“. It seems that even in Africa the belief in taller people being somehow better is also present, although we are fully aware that it was the Belgians who were the original judges on which tribes were deemed by default to be better or more attractive.

How about South America? Again, let’s look at the viewpoints of the natives which lived there before outside influences. The most obvious example is of the legendary white-skinned cloud people called the Chachapoyas. (source). For centuries these people were neighbors to the Incans and the Incans admired them for their tall stature and light skin color.

Quoted below…

“The women of the Chachapoya were much prized by the Incas as they were tall and fair skinned. The Chronicler Pedro Cieza de León offers wrote of the Chachapoyas. “They are the whitest and most handsome of all the people that I have seen in Indies, and their wives were so beautiful that because of their gentleness, many of them deserved to be the Incas’ wives and to also be taken to the Sun Temple.

While I am not going to debate where humans also have some type of natural affinity for lighter skin color and have always thought that lighter skin is more attractive (That is a discussion for other types of websites), I have no doubt that the feature of being of tall stature of this particular tribe in the native South America is something that that shorter Incans admired greatly. So even in native tribes in South American before any type of European Influence, the local also thought that tall stature is something that is admired. 

My Main Point

This bias or unconscious preference to project a more positive image on taller people in 99.9% of all cultures and societies in the world shows that that it is NOT something that was programmed into us by our parents or teachers in grade school.

I don’t think we can un-program or overwrite this type of programming, because it is part of our reptilian brain system. It is unconscious, it is natural, it is something that would be extremely hard to reprogram. I liken this situation to the metaphor of computer software and hardware. Whereas culture is like the software which you can change and rewrite by changing source code of a program, the hardware is something you can’t do without taking a manual, hands on approach through real manipulation using mechanical manipulation. If we treat the brain as the computer, then the software is the ideas, believes, and values in a person. We can over time change that part. The actual anatomy and physiology of the brain is the hardware. There is no way that we can use software (ie hypnosis) to change the hardware. We can change the location of the medulla using positive affirmations. To change the actual brain, you would need surgery tools to cut and saw before moving the physical parts and components around.

Obviously, this preference may be based on natural laws, but it is not a real law as defined by science. In Science actually there is almost no “Laws” per se, but theories. Just like Darwin’s Theory of Evolution and Newton’s Theory of Gravity and Eintein’s Theory of Relativity, it is very hard for scientists to claim anything to be a real law. Off of the top of my head, I know of only two real scientific laws, which are actually related to each other. They are the 1st law of thermodynamics, and the 2nd law of thermodynamics. The first law states that energy can never be lost or increase, but only changed between different types. The second one says that the entropy or disorder in a the examined system will only increase over time. Those are laws. This claim I make is that the height preference is a natural law, like the natural law of sexuality. If you were going to make a bet, 95-99%% of the time, you would be right about going with the taller person since everyone else would agree based on some natural instinctual embedded programming.

Analogously, we can say that this natural law for humans to almost always lean towards the taller people in any group is a very good rule of thumb which is similar to sexuality. You are not going to have a society which is 100% heterosexual. There is always going to be a minority of people who are homosexual, which can not be changed but based on rules of statistical probability. Straight people however will always make up the majority of a culture, around 95% or face extinction from a lack of mating and reproduction. Similarly, we can say the same thing about people’s preferences towards stature. Maybe there might be 2-4% of any society which actually prefers shorter statured individuals, but the majority, and a very large majority of the people will always choose the individuals in the group which are taller than average.

The best example is using height or size to talk about different types of living beings. Centuries ago the Greeks would describe their gods as being of immense sizes. Beyond the greek gods, there were Titans. Titans were of gigantic sizes and because of their size alone, they were given through mental projection immense strength, with so much power that they could compete with the gods.

Humans do not create gods to worship who are described as 6 inch tall dolls. When we talk about greater and more powerful beings, we almost always say that they are of immense height and size. We unconscious give the gods we make up in our head great height and size so that we can worship them. Would we really bow down to a god which appeared and was 6 inches tall? Would we still be afraid of an extraterrestrial species after first contact if they turned out to be just 2 feet in height?

Size is not everything, but it does mean a lot. For most humans size did mean a whole lot. Let’s stop lying to ourselves and say that heightism is a social construct. It is not.

I have still not found one society which believes that the shorter individuals are better than the taller ones.

The following excerpts I have italicized to indicate that they are quotes from other people on the thread board. (The other thread the following lines are taken from are at MMT leg lengthening forum admin Apotheosis exposed and caught deceiving forum members…)

“…All the more to me because I’ve decided on the surgery. Now this is something I can’t believe. I seem to have lost trust in humanity. The humanity that made me feel inferior because I’m short, the humanity that tries to take advantage of that in so base a way…”

“…western society as it stand right now just doesn’t like short men. We can argue until we are blue in the face about confidence and having a great self image and improving what we can change but it doesn’t stop the stigma thats going to be there. Of course this doesn’t mean you crawl into a hole and die…”

“…The problem is completely social…”

If I was to try to summarize all these thoughts that they are putting down, what these person are trying to say is sort of this type of mental viewpoint on the world. 

“…the world is out to get me. In some way, maybe over the centuries of selective indoctrination of the country/culture I was born/grew up into, most of the people in my group/society have made up some type of institutionalized bias against me and people of my kind and they are all in some way (maybe not knowingly) working to put me down so that I would crater to the social pressure and develop a bad self image of myself…. Well I am going to be stubborn and resist it since I know that I am at least smarter than them. They are stupid and ignorant, I am not”.

So they make everything about themselves, and how they are being punished and being short changed in the world. They talk about how unfair it is that they have been inflicted with some type of feature that they have no control over and can’t do anything about.

Maybe also in the back of their mind somewhere they think that because they had a very tough and mentally scarring childhood from school bullies and being lonely with no friends or lack of relationship experience, they have somehow “had it worse” than other people. Because of their increased exposure to pain and suffering, that somehow automatically translates to mean that they are somehow a tougher person or stronger person than another person who didn’t have to go through what they had to go through. They think that the world is out to get them.

The truth is that most people are NOT out to get them just because they might be shorter than average. Only a small minority of people in the world ever care enough to even say hi, much less make the effort to do something to you. The truth is that most people just don’t care about the individual, or the phenomena a person might be so passionate about.

I remember a very revealing lengthy poetic quote along the lines of …

  • “When I was younger I was always worried about what other people thought about me.
  • When I got older I decided to do my own thing and stopped caring about what other people thought about me.
  • Now that I am close to the end of my life, I finally realize now that all that time, nobody was thinking about me. They were too busy thinking about about themselves. They were worrying about what other people thought about them”

The 2nd thing that we need to do is to accept the way that the world, the universe, nature, reality, or existence really operate. Most of us are fully aware that the world is not flat and that the Earth is NOT at the center of the universe. We are not special or our species is not that species. We can no longer stay ignorant because we have already drank from the cup of knowledge. We can;t go back and pretend that we can make up childhood stories and fantasies on how we wish the world would operate. It just doesn’t happen that way.

Instead of writing 10,000+ word discussion post on online threads on Reddit and support groups discussing the philosophical, social, or psychological ramifications of what it means to be shorter than average in one’s society, let’s just swallow this hard pill and do something else with our lives.

Instead of venting, and complaining about how the world is unfair and forcing you to play this game we call life at some obvious disadvantage, we should just take action and try to do something about it. You can save your money to get limb lengthening surgery to make yourselves 3-4 inches taller. If you want 2 feet of increased height, then go in for 5 consecutive surgeries. Those things will hurt a lot and take about 1 year each to do as well as $50-$100,000 each but I know plenty of people who became millionaires in their early 20s and retired. There are people who are short, but they have the resources to change their bodies if they really wanted it bad enough. If you wanted something bad enough, even to become taller, you can get it. You just have to be willing to pay the price for achieving your intended goals. It is just that for our specific purposes, the price we have to pay even for 2-3 inches of extra height can be quite high.

I decided to take a full year and a half out of my life to try to do something about it. This website is my work and effort in creating a resource for people to read and give them a real, decent in finding some type of solution. Sure, maybe at the very end of all of our research and studies we find NOTHING, but that is sort of like life. In the end we all have to die and be pushed in the nothingness and complete emptiness of death eventually. Eventually all of our efforts and work is in vain. We are lost in time and history as people generations from now forget who we were and our gravestone is covered over to make construction for new buildings. In the time we do have on this planet and living this life, let’s try to do something cool.

The video below is the famous speech that Rocky gave to his son in the 6th Rocky movie.

The Issue Over Cognitive Dissonance, Self Rationalization, and Ego Protection

I don’t know anyone who has not let their ego become their master the majority of the time. Our ego is what we are often protecting when we get into any type of argument or fight with another person. I say that we should stop with protecting our ego and just stop fighting the way that the world really works. We can try to write another 10,000 posts trying to argue our point, but that is not going to change anyone’s mind. The best we could do is that maybe after they finish reading our posts, they take 2-3 minutes to stop doing what they intended to do and just think about the implications of what we said.

What I would ask everyone to do is just stop bullshitting themselves, drop the ego for just this once, and just look at the world as it really is. We need to stop all the mental masturbation being done on threads on internet forums. We need to stop trying to use cognitive dissonance and justifications and rationalizations to protect our egos. Accept that height is important, and sometimes that is all that is needed.

Dr. Shahab Mahboubian Interview With Huffington Post

Dr. Shahab Mahboubian Interview With Huffington Post

This was a video which I managed to find which the Huffington Post’s Nancy Redd did with Dr. Shahab Mahboubian and the former limb lengthening patient Akash Shukla. The video was originally uploaded to the website at

Dr. Shahab Mahboubian is probably the most well known limb lengthening orthopedic surgeon in California, at least for the people who are searching online for that specific type of cosmetic surgeon. Both the online forums Make Me Taller and Limb Lengthening Forum has mainly positive things to say about him and his professional skills. We are sure that there are probably a few hundred other orthopedic surgeons just in the Southern California region who can perform the same type of bone remodeling surgery but he is the one who has been promoting, advertising, and marketing himself to the online market the most and get his name out there.

Akash Shukla is one of the most well known limb lengthening surgery advocates and spokesmen. Whereas most people who get the surgery like to become private and completely anonymous about what they did like the Australian Politician Hajnal Ban, he is one of the very few who is fully comfortable in admitting this part of his life. Both people wrote a book about their experiences. Hajnal wrote the book “God Made Me Small, Surgery Made Me Tall” under the Pseudonym Sara Vornamen. He wrote his tale in Measure of a Man.

LSJL and the Brain: New LSJL study

This study has to do with the brain but it has to do with loading effects and is done by Hiroki Yokota one of the LSJL scientists.  The study shows that in some cases LSJL may upregulate Sim1 which does have an effect on height.  However, it’s usually Sim1 deficiency that increases height(but also obesity).

The intent of the study seems to be establishing that Lateral Synovial Joint Loading can be used on sedentary individuals who can’t do other forms of exercise can do this exercise to help prevent various mental problems.  Since LSJL decreases Nerve Growth Factor-Beta(which is involved in pain perception) and increases Serotonin it could induce a feeling of euphoria or well-being.  I have noted this myself when performing LSJL.  Treadmill exercise was compared as well which has bounds of anecdotal evidence of not being able to increase height so tph2 is not likely able to increase height as an adult.

If LSJL upregulates genes that are negative for growth such as Sim1 and NGF-Beta(even if these genes are not very directly related to the processes key to growth plate chondrogenesis), maybe this could indicate that other genes related to growth are regulated in the wrong direction at this load level too.  Although the LSJL lengthening study did take place at similar loads.  It could indicate that the loads used were not sufficient enough.  And the loads need to be such that NGF-Beta is upregulated and Sim1 is downregulated however these two genes could just be tangentially related to longitudinal bone growth and their regulation is independent of LSJL’s lengthening effects.

Physical weight loading induces expression of tryptophan hydroxylase 2 in the brain stem.

“Knee loading, a form of physical activity, has been found to mimic effects of voluntary exercise. Focusing on serotonergic signaling, we addressed a question: Does local mechanical loading to the skeleton elevate expression of tryptophan hydroxylase 2 (tph2) that is a rate-limiting enzyme for brain serotonin? A 5 min knee loading{applied laterally so this is an LSJL study} was applied to mice using 1 N force at 5 Hz for 1,500 cycles. A 5-min treadmill running was used as an exercise (positive) control, and a 90-min tail suspension was used as a stress (negative) control. Expression of tph2 was determined 30 min – 2 h in three brain regions –frontal cortex (FC), ventromedial hypothalamus (VMH), and brain stem (BS). We demonstrated for the first time that knee loading and treadmill exercise upregulated the mRNA level of tph2 in the BS, while tail suspension downregulated it. The protein level of tph2 in the BS was also upregulated by knee loading and downregulated by tail suspension. Furthermore, the downregulation of tph2 mRNA by tail suspension can be partially suppressed by pre-application of knee loading. The expression of tph2 in the FC and VMH was not significantly altered with knee loading. In this study we provided evidence that peripheral mechanical loading can activate central tph2 expression, suggesting that physical cues may mediate tph2-cathalyzed serotonergic signaling in the brain.”

“C57/BL/6 male and female mice, 6 to 8 weeks of age”

“The loaded tissue [under LSJL] is significantly softer and more energy dissipative than bone matrix in the femur and tibia.”

“In response to a 1 N force applied at 5 Hz to the mouse knee, the phase shift angle between the force and resulting displacement was found to be 18.1°. The energy loss per cycle was calculated to be 0.201 mJ, and the Young’s modulus of the knee joint was determined as 166 MPa”

“Cyclic compression was applied to the mouse left knee using an electro-mechanical loading device (ElectroForce® 3100, Bose Corporation, Eden Prairie, MN).”<-Electroforce is available for sale here.  The other versions ie. 3200 are even more expensive but can apply heavier loads.  I’m not sure how viable it is to apply this to the knee and there’s no price so it’s probably incredibly expensive.

“Knee loading and treadmill exercise induced significant upregulation of type I collagen mRNA in the femur and tibia, as well as type II collagen mRNA in cartilage. Furthermore, unloading through tail suspension for 90 min led to significant reduction of type II collagen in cartilage. However, unloading did not present significant change in type I collagen mRNA as compared to the untreated controls. Although not significant, knee loading at 1 N showed a decreasing trend of NGFß in the femur and cartilage as compared to the control”

Knee loading not increasing Type II collagen expression in the femur and tibia bone is inconsistent with the LSJL gene expression study.

mrna of Collagen I and IIIn fact Treadmill exercise had a stronger impact on type II collagen than LSJL did.  I emailed Hiroki Yokota and he says he believed the removed all the cartilage from the bone in this study including growth plate cartilage.  It’s possible that this removal of cartilage also removed other regions of the bone that would normally express type II collagen.    Ideally we would want to see expression of type II collagen in other regions of bone other than the growth plate cartilage as that would be a clear sign of ectopic chondrocyte differentiation.

In this study, the mRNA at an unclear timepoint post loading in contrast to 1 hour following loading as done in the LSJL gene expression study.  It’s possible that Col2a1 was upregulated 1 hour following loading but returned to normal at some period post loading.  There are some pathways that are upregulated 1 hour post loading.  For example, plasma discharge treatment only elevates some factors one hour post treatment.  And enhanced phosphorylation of JNK can return to baseline at one hour in some cases.  Also, the LSJL gene expression study involved microarray data and this involve RT-PCR.

” Among two known upstream transcription factors, mRNA expression of Sim1 in the BS of mice treated with knee loading was significantly increased as compared to that of the sham loaded controls.”<-Does Sim1 have any effect on height?

According to Rare variants in single-minded 1 (SIM1) are associated with severe obesity., Sim1 mainly relates to energy homeostasis.

“Final height in SIM1-deficient adults was not increased. The lack of accelerated linear growth in patients with SIM1 mutations contrasts with the phenotype of [one] patient and the phenotype of Sim1 heterozygous mice. This difference may be explained by partial versus complete loss of SIM1 activity. ”  Height was less than versus control obese subjects.  Height was increased in MC4R deficient subjects.

“accelerated linear growth and increased final height seen in MC4R deficiency”

Here’s the study dealing with the patient mentioned:

Profound obesity associated with a balanced translocation that disrupts the SIM1 gene.

“We have studied a unique girl with early-onset obesity and a de novo balanced translocation between chromosomes 1p22.1 and 6q16.2. Her weight gain is most likely due to excessive food intake, since measured energy expenditure was normal. We cloned and sequenced both translocation breakpoints. The translocation does not appear to affect any transcription unit on 1p, but it disrupts the SIM1 gene on 6q. SIM1 encodes a human homolog of Drosophila Sim (Single-minded), a transcription factor involved in midline neurogenesis, and is a prototypical member of the bHLH-PAS (basic helix-loop-helix + period, aryl hydrocarbon receptor, Single-minded) gene family. Our subject’s trans- location separates the 5′ promoter region and bHLH domain from the 3′ PAS and putative transcriptional regulation domains. The transcriptional targets of SIM1 are not known. Mouse Sim1 is expressed in the developing kidney and central nervous system, and is essential for formation of the supraoptic and paraventricular (PVN) nuclei of the hypothalamus. Previous neuroanatomical and pharmacological studies have implicated the PVN in the regulation of body weight: PVN neurons express the melanocortin 4 receptor and appear to be physiological targets of alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone, which inhibits food intake. We hypothesize that haploinsufficiency of SIM1, possibly acting upstream or downstream of the melanocortin 4 receptor in the PVN, is responsible for severe obesity in our subject.”

“The proband (SW116) was referred to a pediatric geneticist at age 18 months because of excessive growth.”

“We identified a mutation in the SIM1 gene in a girl with profound obesity and increased linear growth.”<-they suspect the mutation was SIM1 haploinsufficiency.

Back to the LSJL study:

“Knee loading led to increases of transcription factor, Sim 1 and Pet 1 mRNA but not REST/NRSF in the BS”

” Other target genes of Sim1, lhx8 and RGS4 did not show significant alteration with knee loading applied in the present study. However, we did find the upregulation of lhx8 and RGS4 mRNA in the BS (hindbrain) as compared to the VMH (midbrain)”

“load-driven upregulation of tph2 mRNA persisted at least 2 h”

“In this study, we showed the effect of peripheral mechanical loading on the brain. The observed remote effect can potentially be mediated through central projecting stimulation and neuronal signaling with neurotrophins. For instance, NGFß is a member of the neurotrophins that is involved in pain sensation and survival of neuron in the brain. Alternatively, loading can be sensed through alterations in the level of hormones and growth factors in the serum. Through signaling molecules in blood circulation, gene expression in the BS might be regulated. Knee loading induces direct loading effects, including formation of new bone, stimulation of fracture healing, prevention of cartilage degeneration, and suppression of pain in the knee.  Knee loading can modulate brain serotonin level through tph2 in the BS.”<-Here’s the study that shows that LSJL decreases NGF-BetaSerotonin may have an effect on height via LRP5.  Although the exact effect of LRP5 on height is unclear.