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Why women are more likely to live longer than men?

Tawanna Cates (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 much longer than men today and how has this advantage increased over time? We only have partial evidence and the evidence is not sufficient to support an informed conclusion. Although we know that there are biological, behavioral and environmental factors which all play a part in women living longer than males, we aren't sure the extent to which each factor plays a role.

In spite of the amount of weight, we are aware that a large portion of the reason women live so much longer than men and not previously, has to relate to the fact that several fundamental non-biological factors have changed. What are these factors that have changed? 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 all countries are above the diagonal parity line - it means that in all nations that a baby girl can be expected to live for ماذا يحدث بين الزوجين في الحمام بالصور longer than a new boy.1

Interestingly, this chart shows that while the female advantage is present everywhere, cross-country differences are large. In Russia women live for 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan the difference is just half a year.

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In countries with high incomes, the longevity advantage for ماذا يحدث بين الزوجين في الحمام بالصور women was smaller
Let's look at how female longevity advantage has changed over time. The following chart shows the gender-based and female-specific life expectancy at the time of birth in the US from 1790-2014. Two specific points stand out.

There is an upward trend. Both men and 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.

The gap is increasing: While the female advantage in life expectancy was quite small but it has risen significantly with time.

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