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Why are women living longer than men?

Lona Fawcett (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. Why do women live more than men do today and اوضاع الجماع how does this benefit increase over time? The evidence is limited and we have only incomplete answers. While we are aware that there are behavioral, biological and اوضاع الجماع environmental variables which all play a part in women who live longer than males, it isn't clear what percentage each factor plays in.

It is known that women live longer than males, regardless of weight. However, this is not because of certain biological factors have changed. These are the factors that are changing. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Others 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. We can see that every country is above the diagonal line of parity. This means that a newborn girl from every country could expect to live longer than her brother.

The chart above shows that, while the advantage for women exists everywhere, the difference between countries is huge. In Russia, women live 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan there is a difference of less that half a year.

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The advantage of women in life expectancy was smaller in countries with higher incomes than it is now.
We will now examine the way that female advantages in longevity has changed over time. The chart below illustrates the men and women's life expectancies at the birth in the US between 1790-2014. Two distinct features stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend. Both genders in America live longer than they were a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is getting wider: Although the advantage of women in terms of life expectancy was extremely small but it has risen significantly over time.

When you click on the option "Change country' on the chart, you are able to verify that these two points are also applicable to the other countries with available information: Sweden, France and the UK.