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Why do women live longer than men?

Sienna Wunderly (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 have a longer life span than men? What is the reason the advantage has grown in the past? We only have a few clues and the evidence is not sufficient to reach an informed conclusion. While we are aware that there are biological, behavioral, and environmental factors that all play a role in women living longer than men, we don't know how much each factor contributes.

In spite of the precise amount, we can say that at least part of the reason why women live so much longer than men today and افضل شامبو وبلسم not in the past, is to be due to the fact that some key non-biological factors have changed. These factors are changing. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Certain are more complicated. 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 افضل شامبو وبلسم women. It is clear that every country is above the diagonal line of parity. This implies that a baby girl from every country could expect to live longer than her younger brother.

This chart shows that, although women have an advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be substantial. In Russia women have an average of 10 years more than men, while in Bhutan the difference is less than half each year.

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In countries with high incomes, the longevity advantage for women was not as great.
Let's look at how the gender advantage in longevity has changed with time. The chart below illustrates the male and female life expectancies at birth in the US in the years 1790 until 2014. Two points stand out.

First, there is an upward trend. Both men as well as women in the US have a much longer life span longer today than a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is increasing: While the advantage of women in life expectancy used to be very small but it has risen significantly over time.

6 months agoYou can check if these points are also applicable to other countries that have information by clicking on the "Change country" option on the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.