Why does the average grandma seem to be so short compared to you? Various factors contribute to the phenomenon, but some stand out the most.
After about age 40, the body's cartilage, bone structure, and muscle all begin to deteriorate. These are the building blocks that make up your body, so as they shrink and wear out (especially in the spine), the body naturally loses almost .5 inches in height every ten years.
We can also attribute their past to their seemingly short appearance. At your grandma's age, she may have lived through times of famine (like the Great Depression) when food was scarce. Moreover, we didn't know as much about health and nutrition back then as we do today. Consequently, people born back in the day weren't always fed as well and didn't manage their health as stringently as they do today.
With health and nutrition standards improving over recent years, countries all over the world are now seeing a parallel growth in height trends. This uptick is slower in richer countries where food is plentiful, and people eat well; on the other hand, it's faster in developing countries where people are just now starting to get the nutrition they need.
The data suggests that nutrition plays a significant role in how the body grows, particularly in height, and this means we should start seeing taller grandmas around the world as time progresses.