Why women are more likely to live 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. Why do women live more than men do today, and why has this advantage increased in the past? There is only limited evidence and the evidence isn’t sufficient to support a definitive conclusion. We know that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all contribute to the fact that women are healthier than men; however, we do not know how significant the impact to each of these variables is.

We know that women are living longer than males, regardless of weight. But this is not due to the fact that certain biological factors have changed. The factors changing are numerous. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Others 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, https://metalrus.ru/forum/go.php?url=aHR0cHM6Ly9nbG9yeW5vdGUuY29t (to www.google.fm) (to www.google.fm) 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 ; this means in all countries a newborn girl can expect to live for longer than a newborn boy.1

The chart below shows that although women have an advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be significant. In Russia women live for 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan there is a difference of less that half a year.



The advantage for women in life expectancy was less in developed countries that it is today.

Let’s examine how the advantage of women in longevity has changed with time. The next chart plots the male and female lifespans at birth in the US during the time period between 1790 and 2014. Two distinct points stand out.

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

The second is that there is an increase in the gap between men and women: female advantage in life expectancy used be very small however, it has increased significantly over the last century.

By selecting ‘Change Country by country’ in the chart, you will be able to check that these two points also apply to the other countries having available data: Sweden, France and the UK.

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