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We're shorter than we used to be—and it's not just because we're past our wear-skyscraper-heels-everywhere phase. No, we are actually shrinking.

Starting at about age 40, people typically lose about half an inch each decade, according to [Link Removed]. As we age, our spine loses bone density and the gel-like disks that separate each vertebra get worn down and thin. The result: our spinal column actually becomes shorter. What's more, that spine deterioration, compounded with muscle loss, can cause that hunched-over look that seems to go hand-in-hand with aging.

As if becoming shorter weren't bad enough, if you notice yourself losing more than half an inch every decade (yes, you can start measuring yourself like you did as a kid!), it could be a sign of osteoporosis, according to the [Link Removed], bone breakdown outpaces the building of new bone in women.

Thankfully, aging doesn't have to be just another word for shrinking! Economists at the University of Southern California, Harvard, and Peking University recently studied 17,708 adults over the age of 45 and found that not everyone shrinks the same. People who call the city home shrink less than country dwellers, and educated folk shrink a full centimeter less than those who are illiterate, according to the [Link Removed]. While researchers say the findings aren't reason to move to the city and frequent the library, they could point to lifestyle habits such as drinking, smoking, and inactivity that promote bone (and height!) loss throughout the years.

Stand tall with these top three ways to prevent height loss:

1. Feed Your Bones

 Women older than 50 need 1,200 milligrams of calcium every day to keep their bones strong, according to the [Link Removed].

2. Hit the Gym

 Exercise is for more than your muscles. [Link Removed].

3. Nix Your Vices

 Smoking damages your bones and lowers the amount of estrogen in your body, while alcohol can make it harder for your body to use all of the calcium you consume, according to the [Link Removed] at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. While one cigarette is one too many, drinking in moderation is fine. Just limit it to one drink a day, suggests the office.

Don't let your age get you down—metaphorically or physically! [Link Removed] is all about prioritizing your health through simple lifestyle changes. The best part: Your ridiculously uncomfortable heels can stay in retirement.

Reaching out is IN! Suffering in silence is OUT!

Party in person! On Monday, June 3 from 5pm to 7pm, grab some girlfriends and head to Burlap Restaurant in Del Mar, California, for the launch of Menopause Mondays Live; brought to you by Ellen and Burlap. Bonus: Blow Me Cool fans will be available free for attendees. [Link Removed]

Is it hot in here or is it just you? Get discounts on [Link Removed]. Available now: cooling clothes, a sleek and discrete chargeable fan, a "Hot Flash Havoc" documentary, and a natural menopause relief formula. Enter promo code "ellend" to save serious cash!

Let's hang out! The first Monday of every month, Ellen is hosting her Menopause Mondays Google Hangouts: Where the Sisterhood Helps the Sisterhood. For June, she is switching things up with a morning event at 8:30am PST/11:30am EST. So grab a coffee (instead of a cocktail!) and get ready to ask Ellen your menopause questions at this free online event! [Link Removed]

Shmirshky, Your links have been removed, please consider upgrading to premium membership.

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