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Why do women 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. What is the reason women live much longer than men today and why has this advantage increased in the past? The evidence is limited and we’re only able to provide limited answers. We recognize that biological, behavioral and environmental factors play a role in the fact that women are healthier than men; however, we aren’t sure how strong the relative contribution of each of these factors is.

We know that women live longer than men, regardless of weight. However this is not because of certain biological factors have changed. These are the factors that are changing. Some are well known and relatively straightforward, like the fact that men smoke more often. Others are more complex. 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. It is clear that every country is over the line of parity diagonally. This means that a newborn girl in all countries can anticipate to live longer than her younger brother.

The chart below shows that although there is a women’s advantage across all countries, differences between countries can be substantial. In Russia women have an average of 10 years more than men, while in Bhutan the difference is just half one year.

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In countries with high incomes, the longevity advantage for women used to be smaller

Let’s see how the female longevity advantage has changed over time. The next chart plots male and accounting.foursquare.org female life expectancies at birth in the US over the period 1790-2014. Two points stand out.

First, there’s an upward trend. as well as women in the US live a lot, much longer than they did a century ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

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

Excel vba \u043f\u043e\u0438\u0441\u043a \u0437\u043d\u0430\u0447\u0435\u043d\u0438\u044f \u0432 \u0434\u0438\u0430\u043f\u0430\u0437\u043e\u043d\u0435 - IT \u0421\u043f\u0440\u0430\u0432\u043e\u0447\u043d\u0438\u043aYou can confirm that these points are also applicable to other countries that have data by clicking on the “Change country” option in the chart. This includes the UK, France, and Sweden.

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