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Why do women live longer than men?

Vilma Santora (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. Why do women live so longer than men and why have these advantages gotten bigger over time? We only have a few clues and the evidence isn't strong enough to make a definitive conclusion. While we are aware that there are behavioral, biological and environmental variables which play a significant role in women who live longer than males, we aren't sure how much each one contributes.

In spite of how much number of pounds, we know that at a minimum, the reason why women live so much longer than men today, but not previously, is to relate to the fact that a number of significant non-biological elements have changed. What are these changing factors? Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Some are more complex. For example, كيفية ممارسة العلاقة الزوجية فى الاسلام 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. As you can see, all countries are above the diagonal line of parity - this means that in all countries that a baby girl can be expected to live for longer than a new boy.1

The chart above shows that the advantage of women exists across all countries, the cross-country differences are large. In Russia women have a longer life span than men; in Bhutan the gap is just half each year.

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The female advantage in life expectancy was much lower in the richer countries that it is today.
We will now examine how the female advantage in longevity has changed with time. The chart below shows men and women's life expectancies when they were born in the US between 1790 until 2014. Two points stand out.

There is an upward trend. as well as women in the US are living much, much longer today than a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

Second, the gap is getting wider: Although the female advantage in terms of life expectancy was quite small but it has risen significantly with time.

When you click on the option "Change country by country' in the chart, you will be able to check that these two points are also applicable to the other countries with available information: Sweden, France and the UK.9 months ago