The Dutch are growing taller than ever: here’s why

Reaching new heights 📏

Walking alongside the giants of the Netherlands can be a bewildering experience for a humble 164cm-tall international. Now, research reveals that growing like a Dutchie doesn’t require a miracleit’s mainly just milk.

Yes, the Dutch diet, lifestyle and good healthcare are among the most important developments leading to the increasing height of people in the Netherlands, the AD reports.

A head and shoulders above the rest

It’s not just the Dutch diet that is balanced, apparently.

Wealth is also more equally distributed across the Netherlands compared to other countries, which helps the average national height grow.

READ MORE | Dutch Quirk #82: Grow really, really tall

“In the US, where there is more inequality than in the Netherlands, you see that people grow shorter on average.”, explains Gert Stulp, sociologist at the University of Groningen.

That’s because higher levels of poverty mean reduced access to healthy food, so children from poorer backgrounds do not receive enough nutrients to grow tall.

Meanwhile, healthy food is more readily and evenly available across the Netherlands (no thanks to you, FEBO).

Drink your melk

We know the Dutchies love their cheese, so it’s no surprise that dairy plays a big role in their towering statures.

Milk is especially important as it’s packed with proteins that improve growth, and people in the Netherlands are guzzling it.

READ MORE | Eat your cheese: How the Dutch became ridiculously tall

Stulp explains, “Europeans have a gene that allows us to continue drinking milk throughout our lives. So we have an extra protein source in our diet for a longer period of time. Those extra proteins make you taller.” Being tall pays off at concerts 😅 #livinginthenetherlands #expatsinthenetherlands #tallgirlcheck #talltiktok #dutchtiktok #tiktoknl #tallpeople #amsterdamlife #dutchpeople ♬ Funny Song – Funny Song Studio & Sounds Reel

So from now on, I have a new response for the next Dutch person to comment on my height: I’m not short, I’m just lactose intolerant. 🥛

Did you know the Dutch diet helps them grow taller? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Feature Image:Depositphotos
Lottie Gale 🇬🇧
Lottie Gale 🇬🇧
Lottie joins DutchReview as an editorial intern after gaining a Bachelor’s in English from her native England. She continues to pursue all things literature in her MA Literature Today at Utrecht University. She is loving life here, and the ever-looming rainclouds often make it feel like a home from home. Lottie arrived to complete her studies and hone her writing skills — she’ll stay for the Dutch tranquility, tulips and tompouce.


  1. My American counterparts have a hard time getting their head around the fact that my 5’9″/175 cm has me as the shortest of all my cousins.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related posts

Latest posts

Wereldmuseum Leiden lets you explore African culture in a whole new light

Whether you’re looking to escape the rain, want to learn about African culture, or doing research for your African Studies major — it’s time...

11 of the funniest headlines from Dutch parody newspaper De Speld

You would be forgiven for thinking that some headlines are pure satire — when they’re real.  Well, that’s not the case here. Today, we’re bringing...

What’s the best SIM card for international calling from the Netherlands?

Whether for bureaucratic reasons or to call your best friend back home, sometimes you have to make international calls from the Netherlands. So, what’s...

It's happening

Upcoming events

The latest Dutch news.
In your inbox.