Shorter men are also more likely to have lower blood insulin levels and less cancer. (Agencies)
"The study shows that body size is linked to the longevity gene (FOXO3), which is important in longevity across most species," said Dr Bradley Willcox, a professor in University of Hawaii's (UH) John A Burns School of Medicine.
The research was based on the Kuakini Honolulu Heart Programme (HHP) and the Kuakini Honolulu-Asian Aging Study (HAAS). Researchers categorised Japanese men into two groups - those who were 5-feet-2 and shorter, and 5-feet-4 and taller.
The former category members, who were shorter, lived the longest.
"The range was seen all the way across from being 5-feet tall to 6-feet tall. The taller you got, the shorter you lived," Willcox added.
The Kuakini HHP started research in 1965, on 8,006 American men of Japanese ancestry born between the years 1900 and 1919.
Around 1,200 men from the study lived into their 90s and 100s, and about 250 of those men are still alive today, said the study published in the journal Plos One.
Shorter men are also more likely to have lower blood insulin levels and less cancer.