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Why do women have longer lives than men?

Analisa Wingfield (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 women have a longer life span than men? And why has this advantage gotten larger in the past? There is only limited evidence and the evidence is not sufficient to draw an unambiguous conclusion. Although we know that there are behavioral, biological as well as environmental factors which all play a part in women living longer than males, we aren't sure the extent to which each factor العاب زوجية plays a role.

3 years agoWe are aware that women are living longer than men, regardless of their weight. But, this is not due to the fact that certain biological or 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 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 العاب زوجية women. It is clear that every country is over the line of parity diagonally. This implies that a baby girl from every country could be expected to live for longer than her older brother.

This chart illustrates that, although women have an advantage in all countries, the differences across countries can be substantial. In Russia, women live for 10 years longer than males. In Bhutan the gap is less than half a calendar year.

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The advantage of women in life expectancy was smaller in rich countries as compared to the present.
We will now examine how the gender advantage in life expectancy has changed over time. The chart below shows gender-based and female-specific life expectancy at the time of birth in the US in the years 1790 until 2014. Two distinct points stand out.

First, there's 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, there's an increase in the gap between men and women: female advantage in life expectancy used be very modest however, it has increased significantly in the past century.

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