Japanese Astronaut Grows 3.5 Inches in Space – Or Not?
Japanese astronaut Norishige Kanai suggested that he had grown 3.5 inches during his 3-week stay at the International Space Station
The shocking news came right from the astronaut, who tweeted the following message:
“I got my body measured after arriving in the space. Surprise, surprise, I was grown by 9 centimeter! only in 3 weeks. it’s first time since my junior high/high school days. I am bit worried if I can fit into my seat in Soyuz on the way back to the earth,” Kanai wrote in his first tweet on Tuesday.
He further added his worries regarding this discovery. He believed that the unusual growth spurt might leave him stuckin orbit because he’d now be unable to fit in the seat on the Soyuz rocket.
Even though the claim of his sudden growth sounds a little bit out-of-this-world, there is some truth in it: without the Earth’s gravitational forces, the fluid that can be found between the discs of the spine fluctuates and results in a lenghtening of the spine, but it also weakens the muscles that support it.
However, the Russian captain had some questions regarding this out-of-nowhere growth and suggested he double-check his measurements. Sadly, Kanai discovered that he had only grown by 0.78 inches.
“I am very sorry to spread such fake news,” he wrote in a follow-up post on Twitter a day later. “I feel no pain on my back or hip, rather stiffness on my shoulder disappeared, so I guess 9 cm growth was too much.”