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Why do women live longer than men?

Danny Arias (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's the reason why women live longer than men? Why does this benefit increase in the past? We have only a small amount of evidence and the evidence isn't strong enough to make an unambiguous conclusion. We know that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all play a role in the fact that women live longer than men; but we don't know exactly how significant the impact of each of these factors is.

In spite of the amount, we can say that at least a portion of the reason women live so much longer than men do today and not previously, is to do with the fact that certain significant non-biological elements 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, افضل شامبو وبلسم 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.

15465.jpgEverywhere in the world women tend to live longer than men
The first chart below shows life expectancy at birth for men and افضل شامبو وبلسم women. As you can see, every country is 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 is interesting in that it shows that the advantage of women exists everywhere, the country-specific differences are huge. In Russia women have a longer life span than men; in Bhutan the gap is less than half one year.

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

The first is that there is an upward trend. Men and women in America have longer lives than they did 100 years ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, there's an increase in the gap between men and women: female advantage in terms of life expectancy used be extremely small however it increased dramatically in the past century.

You can verify that these principles are also applicable to other countries with information by clicking on the "Change country" option in the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.