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Why do women have longer lives than men?

Wilford Tufnell (2022-04-18)


Everywhere in the world women live longer than men - but this was not always the case. The available data from rich countries shows that women didn't live longer than men in the 19th century. What's the main reason women have a longer life span than men? What is the reason has this advantage gotten larger in the past? The evidence is limited and we have only limited solutions. While we are aware that there are biological, psychological, and environmental factors that all play a role in women who live longer than males, we aren't sure how much each one contributes.

In spite of how much weight, we know that at least part of the reason why women live so much longer than men however not as in the past, is to be due to the fact that some fundamental non-biological factors have changed. What are the factors that are changing? Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Others are more complicated. For example, there is evidence that in rich countries the female advantage increased in part because infectious diseases used to affect women disproportionately a century ago, so advances in medicine that reduced the long-term health burden from infectious diseases, especially for survivors, ended up raising women's longevity disproportionately.

Everywhere in the world women tend to live longer than men
The first chart below shows life expectancy at birth for men and women. As we can see, every country is above the diagonal line of parity - which means that in every country the newborn girl is likely to live for longer than a new boy.1

This chart illustrates that, افضل شامبو وبلسم even though women enjoy an advantage in all countries, the differences across countries could be significant. In Russia, women live 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan, the difference is less than half a calendar year.

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The advantage women had in terms of life expectancy was lower in rich countries than it is today.
Let's look at how the gender advantage in longevity has changed over time. The next chart shows the life expectancy of males and females at birth in the US from 1790 to 2014. Two points stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend. as well as women in the US have a much longer life span longer than they did 100 years ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is widening: While the advantage of women in life expectancy was extremely small but it has risen significantly in the past.

Using the option 'Change country in the chart, you can determine if these two points are applicable to the other countries having available data: Sweden, France and the UK.