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Why women live longer than men?

Lonnie Freund (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. Why do women live so more than men do today and why have these advantages gotten bigger in the past? We only have partial evidence and the evidence is not sufficient to draw an informed conclusion. We are aware that behavioral, biological and environmental factors contribute to the fact that women are healthier than men; However, we're not sure what the contribution of each of these factors is.

838-1.jpgWe have learned that women are living longer than men, regardless of their weight. However, this is not due to the fact that certain non-biological factors have changed. What are these factors that have changed? Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Some are more complex. 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, العاب زوجية 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. We can see that all countries are above the diagonal parity line - this means that in all countries the newborn girl is likely to live for longer than a new boy.1

This chart illustrates that, even though women enjoy an advantage throughout the world, the differences between countries can be substantial. In Russia women are 10 years older than men; in Bhutan the gap is less than half a year.

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In rich countries the women's advantage in longevity was not as great.
Let's take a look at how the female longevity advantage has changed in the course of time. The next chart shows the life expectancy of males and females when they were born in the US over the period 1790-2014. Two distinct points stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend. as well as women in the US live much, much longer today than a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is getting wider: العاب زوجية Although the advantage of women in life expectancy was quite small It has significantly increased over time.

You can confirm that these are applicable to other countries that have data by selecting the "Change country" option in the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.