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Why women are more likely to live longer than men?

Lilliana Kobayashi (2022-04-19)


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 is the reason women have a longer life span than men? And how is this difference growing over time? The evidence is limited and we're left with only partial answers. We know there are behavioral, biological and environmental factors that all play a role in women who live longer than males, it isn't clear how much each one contributes.

Independently of the exact number of pounds, افضل كريم للشعر we know that at least part of the reason women live so much longer than men in the present, but not in the past, has to be due to the fact that some key non-biological factors have changed. These variables are evolving. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Other 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, افضل كريم للشعر all countries are above the diagonal line of parity - which means that in every country that a baby girl can be expected to live longer than a new boy.1

This chart shows that, even though women enjoy an advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be significant. In Russia, women live 10 years longer than males. In Bhutan there is a difference of less that half a year.

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In rich countries the longevity advantage for women was smaller
We will now examine how the female advantage in longevity has changed with time. The next chart plots the male and female lifespans at birth in the US over the period 1790-2014. Two points stand out.

First, there is an upward trend. Men as well as women in the US live much, much longer than they did a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is growing: Although the female advantage in life expectancy was once tiny, it has increased substantially with time.

By selecting 'Change Country from the chart, you are able to check that these two points also apply to the other countries having available data: Sweden, France and the UK.