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Why women live longer than men?

Vilma Santora (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 longer than men? What is the reason does this benefit increase over time? We only have partial evidence and ماذا يحدث بين الزوجين في الحمام بالصور the evidence is not sufficient to support an absolute conclusion. We recognize that biological, behavioral and environmental factors all contribute to the fact that women live longer than men; but we don't know exactly how significant the impact of each factor is.

In spite of the amount, we can say that at least a portion of the reason why women live longer than men today but not previously, has to be due to the fact that certain important non-biological aspects have changed. What are these changing factors? Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. There are others that are more intricate. 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.

hqdefault.jpgEverywhere in the world women tend to live longer than men
The first chart below shows life expectancy at birth for men and women. It is clear that all countries are over the line of parity diagonally. This implies that a baby girl from any country can be expected to live for longer than her younger brother.

It is interesting to note that while the female advantage is present everywhere, global differences are significant. In Russia women live 10 years longer than males. In Bhutan the difference is just half a year.

In wealthy countries, the women's advantage in longevity used to be smaller
Let's see how the female longevity advantage has changed over time. The following chart shows the male and female life expectancy at the birth in the US between 1790-2014. Two things stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend: Men and women in the US are living much, much longer than they did a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, ماذا يحدث بين الزوجين في الحمام بالصور there's an increasing gap: The female advantage in life expectancy used be quite small, but it grew substantially over the course of the last century.

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