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Why do women live longer than men?

Shawnee Kiley (2022-04-21)

تاتو الحلمات والسرة بالنكهاتEverywhere 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 makes women live longer than men in the present and 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 absolute conclusion. We recognize that biological, behavioral and environmental factors all play a role in the fact that women live longer than men; however, we aren't sure how significant the impact of each of these factors is.

In spite of the amount of weight, we are aware that at a minimum, اضيق وضعية للجماع the reason why women live so much longer than men do today but not previously, اضيق وضعية للجماع has to have to do with the fact that certain important non-biological aspects have changed. These variables are evolving. 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 every country is above the diagonal line of parity. This implies that a baby girl in all countries can expect to live longer than her older brother.

This chart shows that, although there is a women's advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be substantial. In Russia, women live for 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan, the difference is less than half a calendar year.

In the richer countries, the longevity advantage for women used to be smaller
Let's now look at the way that female advantages in terms of longevity has changed over time. The chart below shows male and female life expectancy at the birth in the US during the period 1790 to 2014. Two points stand out.

First, there is an upward trend. Both genders living in America are living longer than they were a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is growing: Although the female advantage in life expectancy was tiny but it has risen significantly with time.

Using the option 'Change country from the chart, you will be able to confirm that the two points are also applicable to other countries that have available information: Sweden, France and the UK.