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Why women live longer than men?

Fleta Athaldo (2022-04-22)


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 longer than men and how does this benefit increase in the past? We have only a small amount of evidence and the evidence isn't sufficient to support an absolute conclusion. While we are aware that there are behavioral, biological and environmental factors that all play a role in women's longevity more than men, we do not know the extent to which each factor plays a role.

We know that women are living longer than males, regardless of weight. But this is not because of certain biological or 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. As you can see, all countries are above the diagonal parity line - which means that in every country a newborn girl can expect to live for longer than a newborn boy.1

Interestingly, this chart shows that while the female advantage exists across all countries, the country-specific differences are huge. In Russia women have a longer life span than men. In Bhutan the gap is just half an hour.

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The female advantage in terms of life expectancy was lower in countries with higher incomes than it is today.
Let's look at how female longevity advantage has changed over time. The chart below illustrates the male and female life expectancies at birth in the US from 1790 to 2014. Two distinct points stand ماذا يحدث بين الزوجين في الحمام بالصور out.

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

The gap is getting wider: Although the female advantage in life expectancy used to be tiny however, it has grown significantly over time.

When you click on the option "Change country from the chart, you will be able to determine if these two points apply to other countries with available information: Sweden, France and the UK.