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Why are women living longer than men?

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 why is this difference growing in the past? The evidence is limited and we’re left with only limited answers. While we are aware that there are biological, behavioral as well as environmental factors which all play a part in women living longer than men, we don’t know how much each factor contributes.

We know that women are living longer than males, regardless of weight. However it is not because of certain non-biological aspects have changed. The factors changing are numerous. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. There are other issues 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, Classicalmusicmp3freedownload.com/ja/index.php?title=%E5%88%A9%E7%94%A8%E8%80%85:RosettaEnoch28 (annahungerschiff.org) 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 diagonal line of parity. This means that a newborn girl in all countries can be expected to live for longer than her brother.

This graph shows that although there is a women’s advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be substantial. In Russia women live 10 years longer than men; in Bhutan the gap is just half a year.



The advantage women had in life expectancy was less in developed countries than it is now.

Let’s look at how female longevity advantage has changed in the course of time. The following chart shows the male and female lifespans when they were born in the US over the period 1790-2014. Two areas stand out.

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

There is an increasing gap: The female advantage in life expectancy used to be very modest however it increased dramatically over the last century.

You can verify that the points you’ve listed are applicable to other countries with data by clicking on the “Change country” option on the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.

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