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’s the reason women are more likely to live longer than men? And how does this benefit increase over time? We only have partial evidence and the evidence isn’t sufficient to reach an unambiguous conclusion. While we are aware that there are biological, behavioral and environmental factors which all play a part in women’s longevity more than males, we aren’t sure the extent to which each factor plays a role.

It is known that women live longer than males, regardless of weight. However this is not because of certain biological or 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, 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 ابر التخسيس women. It is clear that every country is over the line of parity diagonally. This implies that a baby girl from any country can expect to live longer than her younger brother.

This graph shows that even though women enjoy an advantage throughout the world, the differences between countries could be significant. In Russia women live 10 years more than males. In Bhutan there is a difference of less than half a calendar year.



The female advantage in terms of life expectancy was lower in developed countries than it is today.

We will now examine how the female advantage in terms of longevity has changed over time. The chart below shows male and female life expectancies at birth in the US between 1790-2014. Two distinct points stand out.

The first is that there is an upward trend. Both genders in the United States live longer than they used to 100 years ago. This is in line with historical increases in life expectancy everywhere in the world.

There is a widening gap: The female advantage in life expectancy used be very small however it increased dramatically over the last century.

By selecting ‘Change Country from the chart, you can check that these two points also apply to other countries with available data: Sweden, France and the UK.


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