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Why women are more likely to live longer than men?

Leandro Tilton (2022-04-21)

3alamalmasareftoweb-140121045249-phpapp0Everywhere 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 and how does this benefit increase over time? The evidence isn't conclusive and we're left with only incomplete answers. We are aware that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all contribute to the fact that women are healthier than men; however, we do not know what the contribution of each of these factors is.

In spite of how much amount, we can say that at least a portion of the reason women live so much longer than men do today and not previously, is to relate to the fact that several key non-biological factors have changed. The factors changing are numerous. 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 over the line of parity diagonally. This means that a newborn girl in every country can be expected to live for longer than her brothers.

The chart above shows that, while the advantage for women is present everywhere, difference between countries is huge. In Russia women are 10 years older than men. In Bhutan the difference is just half an hour.

The advantage for women in life expectancy was smaller in countries with higher incomes than it is now.
Let's take a look at how the female longevity advantage has changed over time. The next chart compares the life expectancy of males and females at birth in the US during the time period between 1790 and 2014. Two specific points stand out.

First, صبغ الشعر بالاسود there's an upward trend. as well as women in the US live a lot, much longer than they did a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

The gap is increasing: While the advantage of women in life expectancy was extremely small It has significantly increased in the past.

Using the option 'Change country' on the chart, determine if these two points also apply to other countries that have available data: Sweden, France and the UK.