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Why women live longer than men?

Shawnee Kiley (2022-04-20)


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 live longer than men? What is the reason the advantage has grown over time? We only have partial evidence and the evidence isn't sufficient to reach an unambiguous conclusion. We are aware that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all play a role in the fact that women live longer than men; However, we're not sure what the contribution of each one of these factors is.

In spite of the precise amount, we can say that at a minimum, the reason why women live longer than men however not as in the past, has to do with the fact that several important non-biological aspects have changed. What are the factors that are changing? Some are well known and افضل كريم للشعر relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. There are other issues that are more intricate. 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. We can see that every country is over the line of parity diagonally. This means that a newborn girl from any country can expect to live longer than her brothers.

لعبة العشق المجنون بالشيكولاتةThis chart is interesting in that it shows that while the female advantage exists across all countries, the difference between countries is huge. In Russia women have a longer life span than men. In Bhutan the difference is just half one year.

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The advantage of women in life expectancy was less in countries with higher incomes as compared to the present.
We will now examine how the female advantage in longevity has changed over time. The chart below shows male and female life expectancy at birth in the US during the period 1790 to 2014. Two things stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend: Men as well as women in the US are living much, much 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 female advantage in life expectancy was very small It has significantly increased with time.

Using the option 'Change country' on the chart, you are able to determine if these two points are also applicable to other countries with available information: Sweden, France and the UK.