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Why women live longer than men?

Lucile Baylebridge (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's the reason why women live longer than men? What is the reason is this difference growing as time passes? We have only a small amount of evidence and the evidence is not sufficient to support an informed conclusion. We know that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all contribute to the fact that women live longer than men; However, we're not sure how strong the relative contribution of each of these factors is.

We are aware that women are living longer than men, regardless of weight. But this isn't because of certain biological factors have changed. What are these changing factors? 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, 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 you can see, اوضاع الجماع every country is above the diagonal line of parity - this means that in all countries baby girls can expect to live longer than a new boy.1

This chart shows that, even though women enjoy an advantage in all countries, the differences across countries can be substantial. In Russia women are 10 years older than men; in Bhutan the gap is less than half each year.

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In rich countries the longevity advantage for women was smaller
We will now examine how the female advantage in terms of longevity has changed over time. The chart below shows men and women's life expectancies at the birth in the US in the years 1790 to 2014. Two points stand out.

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

The gap is widening: While the female advantage in life expectancy was extremely small however, اوضاع الجماع it has grown significantly in the past.

You can check if these principles are also applicable to other countries that have data by clicking the "Change country" option on the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.