You Could've Been Taller If It Weren't For That Schoolbag You Carried Everyday

Remember walking around all day with 5kg worth of books hanging around your shoulders?

Cover image via educationpost

Between extracurricular activities, tuition, music classes and homework - going to school might make kids feel like they have the weight of the world on their shoulders. Sometimes, they literally do.

A load too heavy.

Image via TheStar

The issue of heavy school bags has always been a problem in Malaysia. Many kids carry school bags that weighed from 2kg up till 5kg.

Image via Bakprotek

The issue of heavy school bags is a perennial problem, and many parents are less than impressed. “There are too many periods in a day,” said Leon Loke, a mother. “My daughter in Year Three carries more than 5kg everyday and she only weighs 19kg. This should not be the way, as carrying such a heavy load is bad for her health.”

Maybe buying smaller bags is the solution so kids would pack less into their bags. Zalora has a wide range of kids fashion including backpacks that may just be the right size for your child which also looks pretty great. Use these Says Zalora coupons for some great deals.

Ideally, a school bag should only weigh between 10 to 15 percent of a child's weight. But we all know that isn't the case here in Malaysia - and it's detrimental to the spine.

Image via Sengkangbabies

Experts and health boards say that a school bag should weigh between 10 and 15% of a child’s body weight. So, hypothetically, a child who weighs 40kg should carry between 4 and 6kg of books in his or her bag.

According to health practitioners, if a school bag weighs more than 20% of your child's body weight; it is very likely to severely harm his or her spine, increasing risks for scoliosis that will lead to lifelong back ailments.

Unfortunately, the problem doesn't stop there. The compression of your spine during your schooling days have a lasting effect to your growth into adulthood - and how tall you'll be.

How a backpack can cause an asymmetric lumbar spine.

Image via MIC

Even if your spine stays straight through years of hauling your life on your back, compressing the spine by carrying a heavy school bag can actually affect how tall you'll grow to be — and how tall you'll stay.

Our lumbar disks - bones under our lower spine - go through wear and tear throughout the years - which is normal. However, by adding a heavy school bag, we're accelerating it.

When you add an extremely heavy school bag, five days a week for over a decade, we're basically crushing those water-filled gaps, compressing the spine with all the extra weight. A backpack accelerates the rate at which we lose water in the lumbar disks, causing us to shrink a little bit more quickly.

Because of that, we lose height from prolonged damage to our lumbar disks

"You lose disk height from prolonged damage," said Dr. Harvinder Sandhu, a spinal surgeon. "When it loses water content, it begins to shrink." Think of driving a car with an underinflated tire. "You can still drive the car, but the tire is becoming sloppy," Sandhu said. "You wear the tread down. It's the same with disks: If they're under mechanical stresses, they'll get damaged much faster."

So, if you've been lamenting on how you wished you were taller... it was that big bag of yours!

Time to let it go...

Image via Judith Yeoh/SAYS

While these foods may not make you taller, they'll definitely make you smarter!

We're pretty sure these kids don't need any heavy school bags:

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