Physiological, Performance, Growth, Longevity and Ecological Ramifications

Article Index

Book Highlights

The following highlights the content of "Human Body Size and the Laws of Scaling". Excerpts from book reviews are located at the end of the book description. These reviews appeared in Public Health Nutrition (Cambridge University Press), British Journal of Sports Medicine, Economics and Human Biology, The Gerontologist, the Quarterly Review of Biology, and The Journal of Chinese Clinical Medicine.

"Human Body Size and the Laws of Scaling" is the only book to systematically evaluate the various advantages and disadvantages of increasing human height. From an individual standpoint, the book examines whether greater height leads to improved physical and mental performance, better health and greater longevity. From an ecological standpoint, the book illustrates that the number of people in the world is only half of the problem of overpopulation since 9 billion people who are taller and weigh 200 pounds consume many more resources than 9 billion people who weigh 150 pounds. From an ecological perspective, it makes little difference whether this weight is due to obesity or simply larger lean body mass.

The book also examines a variety of other topics, including the impact of nutrition on birth weight, childhood growth, early sexual maturation, adult health and longevity. Several hidden causes of obesity are also described. The evolutionary aspects of body size and its survival costs are also reviewed.

In addition, the book provides unexpected findings on how human height impacts physical performance, accident risks, cancer, heart disease, diabetes, longevity, intelligence, resource and water needs, economics, and the environment. Biological factors related to height and longevity are also discussed.

The evidence presented includes a wide variety of studies, very large population samples, and diverse populations. The chapters are listed on the next page and the book contains over 1000 peer-reviewed references. However, the material covered in the book is based on over 5000 references.

No other book provides:

(1) a systematic overview on the ramifications of increasing body size and

(2) a wealth of little-known facts on body size and its relation to health, longevity, intelligence, physical performance, resource consumption, economics, and ecology.

Book Reviewer Comments

Several book reviewer comments are given under BOOK REVIEWS, p. 1 of 4.

Chapter Contents:

  1. Why the Study of Human Size is Important
  2. Human Scaling and the Body Mass Index
  3. Advantages of Taller Human Height
  4. Advantages of Shorter Human Height
  5. Body Height and its Relation to Chronic Disease and Longevity
  6. BMI and Weight: Their Relation to Diabetes, CVD, Cancer and All-Cause Mortality
  7. The Obesity Epidemic, Birth weight, Rapid Growth and Superior Nutrition
  8. Long-lived Mutant, Gene Knockout and Transgenic Mice
  9. The Evolutionary Ecology of Body Size with Special Reference to Allometry and Survivorship
  10. Overview of Research on Giant Transgenic Mice with Emphasis on the Brain and Aging Speculations on the Evolutionary Ecology of Homo Sapiens with Special Reference to Body Size, Allometry and Survivorship, Birthweight, Height, Brain Size and Intellectual Ability
  11. Impact of Body Size on Resources, Pollution, the Environment and Economics
  12. Final Remarks on Human Size, Scaling and Ecological Implications

Appendix A: Symbols, Acronyms and Abbreviations used in text

Appendix B: Technical review of the molecular and physiological aspects relevant to body size, free radicals and aging



Andrzej Bartke, Southern Illinois University School of Medicine

C. David Rollo, Department of Biology, McMaster University, Canada

Thomas T. Samaras, Reventropy Associates, San Diego, Ca

Citation Data

The book's citation is: Human Body Size and the Laws of Scaling – Physiological, Performance, Growth, Longevity and Ecological Ramifications. Ed: T. Samaras. Publisher: Nova Science Publishers, NY, 2007.  ISBN: 13 978-1-60021-408-0

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