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 is the reason women live much longer than men today and how is this difference growing over time? The evidence isn’t conclusive and we’re left with only partial answers. We are aware that behavioral, biological and environmental factors all play a role in the fact that women have longer life spans than men, However, we’re not sure how significant the impact of each factor is.
In spite of the amount of weight, we are aware that at a minimum, the reason why women live so much longer than men, but not in the past, is to have to do with the fact that a number of key non-biological factors have changed. What are these new factors? 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, especially for survivors, Ww41.photomall.com/__media__/js/netsoltrademark.php?d=glorynote.com%2F%25D8%25A7%25D9%2581%25D8%25B6%25D9%2584-%25D8%25B4%25D8%25A7%25D9%2585%25D8%25A8%25D9%2588-%25D9%2588%25D8%25A8%25D9%2584%25D8%25B3%25D9%2585-%25D8%25A8%25D8%25B9%25D8%25AF-%25D8%25A7%25D9%2584%25D8%25A8%25D8%25B1%25D9%2588%25D8%25AA%25D9%258A%25D9%2586%2F (click the following post) 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 every country is over the diagonal line of parity. This means that a newborn girl in every country can anticipate to live longer than her older brother.
This chart is interesting in that it shows that although the female advantage exists across all countries, the country-specific differences are huge. In Russia, women live for 10 years longer than men. In Bhutan the difference is less than half a calendar year.
In rich countries the women’s advantage in longevity used to be smaller
Let’s look at how female longevity advantage has changed over time. The next chart shows male and female life expectancies at birth in the US from 1790 to 2014. Two aspects stand out.
There is an upward trend: Men and women in the US have a much longer life span longer today than a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.
There is an increasing gap: The female advantage in terms of life expectancy used to be quite small however, it has increased significantly during the last century.
When you click on the option “Change country in the chart, check that these two points are applicable to other countries that have available data: Sweden, France and the UK.