Revealed: The Average Height Of Korean People

by   |   Feb 16, 2023
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Today we will continue diving into the average height of Korean people. Do you know that their mean height has remarkably changed compared to 40 years ago? Koreans, in fact, are the tallest countries in Asia. So, what happened? Is there any secret? Keep scrolling to discover the truth now!

What is the average height of Korean men and women?

The mean height for Korean men was measured to be 5 feet 9 inches (175.5 cm), and the mean height for Korean women was 5 feet 4.25 inches (163.2 cm) [1]. The interesting fact is the number of tall people has grown steadily, with the average height increasing by 2.5 inches (6.4 cm) and 2.1 inches (5.3 cm) taller than the average ones in 1979 respectively.


Why has the average height increased?

That said, nutrition is one of the biggest reasons why the average height of Koreans increased.

In the past, Korea mainly relied on agriculture. So, they ate much more rice than meat, resulting in less nutrition. But at the end of the 19th century, Korea started modernizing and got rapid growth in the 1970 and 80s. They also decreased the amount of rice intake and increased the amount of meat intake, which helped enhance the nutrient intake overall.

Of course, there are other factors contributing to why Koreans are getting taller. For instance, they enjoy a high level of social mobility, which means they generally gain a good standard of living. The high socioeconomic status has been related to taller height in children and adults. Moreover, Korea is proud of having one of the best healthcare systems in the world. And that allows people to have access to high-quality medical care.

So, are Koreans really tall?

Compared to the average height of people in America and some European countries, Korea is not a country where there are lots of tall people.

But if you watch Korean movies, you may see that some idols are taller than average. These Kpop idols are tall for many reasons. Most are chosen due to their height and have gone through years of training before debuting. Also, the editing makes them look taller. Some idols even get plastic surgery, and this is normal in Korea.

There is no denying the fact that the average height of Koreans has been rising for over 100 years. Basically, the mean height of Korean women has the largest increase in the world with an addition of 7.9 inches (20.1 cm). Meanwhile, the mean height of Korean men has increased to 3rd in the world after Greenland and Iran.

Besides, we mention the specific height figures of some Asian countries.


If Korea is ranked as the country with the highest average height in Asia, China is the second. The mean height of Chinese people in 2019 is 5 feet 4 inches (163.5 cm) for women and 5 feet 9 inches (175.7 centimeters). For further information, click here.


The average height of Japanese people in 2019 is 5 feet 2.6 inches (158.8 cm) for women and 5 feet 7.4 inches (171.2 cm) for men. In the last century, Japanese people have particularly gotten taller and ranked third in Asia. Read here if you want to know more.

North Korea

South Koreans are taller than North Koreans. The mean height of North Korean people in 2019 is 5 feet 3.4 inches (161.2 cm) for women and 5 feet 8.7 inches (174.7 cm) for men [1].


Who is the tallest person in Korea?

Hong-man Choi is a kickboxer and mixed martial arts. His height is 7 feet 2 inches (218 cm) and known as the tallest person in South Korea. Meanwhile, the tallest person in North Korea is Ri Myung-hun. He is a former basketball player and has a “giant” height – 7 feet 8 ½ inches (235 cm).

Will height continue to grow?

As mentioned above, the average height of Korean people has grown remarkably over a century. But would it continue in the future?

Statistics point out that there has not been a big growth recently. And the major cause is related to the amount of sleep people get. 7 hours and 41 minutes are the average hours of sleep for Korean people. And when researching adults only, the number was reduced to 6.8 hours.

We all know that lack of sleep might affect growth because of growth hormone deficiencies. Moreover, sleep deprivation is related to obesity and diabetes [2, 3].

What to consider?

Not only does the mean height of Koreans have a slight, or even zero increase, but also the other countries with the highest average height. There are, of course, many different reasons. But as an individual, you should pay attention to some basic steps to optimize the growth potential.

During the growing years, the first and foremost thing is to get all of the essential nutrients the body needs. A well-balanced diet should include fresh vegetables and fruits, proteins, dairy, and whole grains. Also, you need to avoid or limit foods with high amounts of trans fats, saturated fats, salt, and sugar.

No matter who you are, a child or an adult, staying active is necessary to strengthen muscles and bones, enhance HGH production, maintain overall health, and prevent the risk of osteoporosis. Having an optimal sleep duration and timing is also vital because it contributes to healthy physical growth, muscle repair, immune system, and metabolism.

For further information related to other height-increasing tips, you can discover more here.


In short

Many factors have contributed to the mean height of Koreans today. Having better nutrition and high living standards have played a significant role in increased height. Besides, Koreans tend to have “tall” genes from marrying Western foreigners.

That wraps up the article for today. Does it give you a clear answer about the average height of Korean people?

We hope it did and that you have also learned something new. And do not follow us to get more updated information about height growth.

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