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Why do women have longer lives than men?

Sabine Biaggini (2022-04-21)


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 is this difference growing in the past? There is only limited evidence and the evidence isn't sufficient to reach an informed conclusion. We know there are behavioral, افضل كريم للشعر biological and environmental factors that all play a role in women who live longer than men, we don't know what percentage each factor plays in.

In spite of the precise amount of weight, we are aware that at least a portion of the reason women live so much longer than men but not previously, is to be due to the fact that some key non-biological factors 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.

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 line of parity diagonally. This implies that a baby girl in every country can be expected to live for longer than her brother.

The chart below shows that even though women enjoy an advantage throughout the world, the differences between countries could be significant. In Russia women live for 10 years longer than males. In Bhutan the gap is just half a year.

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The advantage of women in life expectancy was much lower in developed countries than it is now.
Let's examine how the female longevity advantage has changed in the course of time. The chart below shows men and women's life expectancies when they were born in the US from 1790 to 2014. Two points stand out.

First, there is an upward trend. Both genders in America live longer than they used to 100 years ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is widening: While the advantage of women in life expectancy was extremely small It has significantly increased over time.

You can confirm that these points are also applicable to other countries with data by clicking the "Change country" option on the chart. This includes the UK, France, افضل كريم للشعر and Sweden.6 days ago