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Why women are more likely to live longer than men?

Ferne Sisk (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 makes women live longer than men and how does this benefit increase over time? The evidence is sketchy and we only have partial answers. We know there are biological, psychological as well as environmental factors which play a significant role in the longevity of women over men, we do not know the extent to which each factor plays a role.

In spite of the number of pounds, we know that at least part of the reason women live longer than men today and not previously, اضيق وضعية للجماع is to do with the fact that several significant non-biological elements have changed. The factors changing are numerous. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Certain 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 women. It is clear that every country is above the line of parity diagonally. This implies that a baby girl in every country can expect to live longer than her brother.

It is interesting to note that, while the advantage for women exists in all countries, cross-country differences are large. In Russia, women live 10 years longer than males. In Bhutan the gap is just half a year.

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In countries with high incomes, the longevity advantage for women used to be smaller
Let's take a look at how the female longevity advantage has changed in the course of time. The next chart shows the life expectancy of males and females at birth in the US over the period 1790-2014. Two areas stand out.

First, there is an upward trend: Men as well as women in the US live much, much longer than they did 100 years ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

The gap is widening: While the female advantage in life expectancy was once tiny It has significantly increased in the past.

You can check if these are applicable to other countries with data by clicking on the "Change country" option in the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.