Life Expectancy

News and resources on current life expectancy – lets see how it changes over time.

 

Resources

Read blog posts tagged with lifespan.

Life Expectancy graphs and maps – Our World in Data

Life expectancy: 120,000 numbers in just four minutes – BBC News
Fascinating data visualisation of life expectancy for 200 countries over 200 years.

Latest News

Having children could increase your lifespan – Independent – 17-Mar-2017
Once you reach the age of 60, men and women live longer if they have at least one child.
Based on Swedish census data from over 1.4 million people born between the years of 1911 and 1925.
Men with children live 1.8 years longer, and 1.5 years for women.
Latest study concluded that the sex of the children makes no difference.

Why do taller humans die younger? – Phys.org – 1-Mar-2017
Of the 10 tallest people ever recorded, the oldest died at 56.
In people, height is negatively correlated with longevity.
Shortness may be partly due to reduced calorie intake – a known lifespan enhancer.
Life expectancy of people under 158 cm (5′ 2″) a year longer than those over 165 cm (5′ 5″) tall

Life expectancy: 120,000 numbers in just four minutes – BBC News – 7-Feb-2017
Fascinating data visualisation of life expectancy for 200 countries over 200 years.
Charts life expectancy v income over time.
From poor and sick to rich & healthy.
Highlights significant difference between continents.
Don’t blink for the dip in 1918!
COMMENT: emerging countries closely track life expectancy for a fraction of the income

Figures Show 20-Year Gap Between Healthy Life Expectancy Across UK – Huffington Post – 30-Nov-2016
Male healthspan varies from 54 years in Tower Hamlets, London, to 71.8 years in Rutland, East Midlands.
Female healthspan varies from 51.4 years in Antrim and Newtown Abbey, Northern Ireland, to 74.6 years in the Orkney Islands.
New Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures show that newborn boys can expect to live for 79.2 years and a girl 82.9 years.

First-time birth in later life may increase longevity – Medical News Today – 18-Nov-2016
Average age of American mothers has increased from 24.9 years in 2000 to 26.3 years in 2014.
First births in women aged 35 years and over also increased by 23 percent.
Older age in mothers has been linked to a variety of adverse birth outcomes, such as multiple births and congenital disabilities.
But mothers who had their first child when they were 25 years or older were more likely to survive to age 90.
Multiple pregnancies also increases chance of living to 90.

Community ‘Well-Being’ Helps You Live Longer – WebMD – 10-Nov-2016
People in more contented U.S. counties lived an extra two years or more.
Well-being includes physical health as well as people’s levels of emotional health, life satisfaction, optimism and security.
Direct correlation found between well-being and life expectancy regardless of the area’s racial makeup, poverty and education levels.
Efforts to improve Americans’ health and longevity have to go beyond the health care system.

Record number of centenarians in UK – BBC News – 29-Sep-2016
Number of people aged 100, or over, has quadrupled over the last two decades.
Also a 6-fold increase in number of people aged over 105 since 1985.
People born between 2013 and 2015 can expect to live to 79/82 (male/female).
On average we’re all living 12 weeks longer every year.
COMMENT: when we live 52 weeks longer every year we’ll be living forever – its closer than you think!

Fears of ageing may cause earlier death – Medical Xpress – 29-Sep-2016
World Health Organization quote research that people who hold negative views about their own ageing do not recover as well from disability and live on average 7.5 years less than people with positive attitudes.
60 percent of respondents said they believed older people “were not respected.”
Attitudes towards older people were more negative in richer countries.
WHO study of 83,000 respondents aged 18 and older in 57 countries.

Epigenetic clock predicts life expectancy – United Press International – 28-Sep-2016
Study led UCLA analyzed over 13,000 blood samples.
Aging of blood calculated by tracking DNA alterations over time.
5 percent of people age at a faster biological rate irrespective of lifestyle choices.
Risk factors like smoking, diabetes and high blood pressure still predict mortality more strongly than one’s epigenetic aging rate.

Bookworms Have Better Life Expectancy – Pharmacy Times – 9-Aug-2016
Reading patterns of 3635 patients aged 50 and older studied.
12 years later participants who read for up to 3.5 hour a week were 17% less likely to die than those who didn’t read at all.
Study took into account education.
Book reading engages higher cognitive processes and promotes empathy, social perception, and emotional intelligence.
COMMENT: surprising results given the sedentary nature of reading

Increase in disability-free life expectancy – Science Daily – 6-Jun-2016
Difference in life expectancy for a 65-year-old:
1992: 17.5 years with 8.9 years free from disability
2008: 18.8 years with 10.7 years free from disability
Mainly due to improvements in cardio-vascular health and declines in vision problems.
As much as half of the improvement is because of medical care, especially statin drug treatment.
Improvement in vision health almost entirely down to improvement and availability of cataract surgery.
COMMENT: this goes against the general thinking that healthspan wouldn’t increase as fast as lifespan

Animated GIF: 100 years of global aging – VOX – 20-May-2016
Today median age ranges from 18.5 years in Cameroon to 46.5 years in Japan.
Median age tends to be significantly higher in wealthy and middle-income countries.
Median age can also increase when fertility declines.
In Japan working age population is falling by about 1 percent per year.

Interview: Research and database director of Gerontology Research Group – VICE – 20-May-2016
Gerontologist Robert Young talks about maximum human lifespan.
Odds of anyone living to 127 at the moment are one in a trillion.
Scientists don’t agree on what aging is.

Twins more likely to live to retirement – New Scientist – 18-May-2016
Identical twins are less likely to die young from unexpected causes.
10% more likely to survive into their 60s.
Possibly due to material help and emotional support from their twin.
In later years genetic factors become more important.
University of Washington in Seattle examined data on Danish twins born between 1870 and 1900.
Compared their fate with the general population from the same time.

Life expectancy gap between rich and poor widens in UK – Independent – 3-May-2016
First time gap has increased for 150 years.
Mainly due to lifestyle choices such as smoking, drinking and poor diet.
Based on data from the Human Mortality Database

Visceral Fat Tissue Will Kill You – Fight Aging! – 11-Apr-2016
Visceral fat is the fat around the organs, rather than under the skin (subcutaneous fat).
Visceral fat cells send out chemical signals that trigger the immune system leading to raised levels of chronic inflammation – one of the underlying causes of aging.
Sedentary lifestyle and obesity are each about as bad for you as a smoking habit.

Two common gene variants reduce life expectancy by 3 years – Science Alert – 1-Apr-2016
University of Edinburgh researchers analysed genetic information from more than 152,000 people in UK Biobank study.
Identified variants in APOE and CHRNA3/5 genes that can cut your lifespan by up to three years.
More than two-thirds of us carry one of them.
Study published in Nature Communications.

Good education adds a decade to life expectancy – Newsweek – 22-Mar-2016
Life expectancy of college-educated white men 11.9 years longer than their low-educated counterparts.
Smallest difference is 4.7 years for black women.
Gap has grown significantly since 1990.
Similar gaps in Europe but difference much larger in the US.
Much larger variation in life spans for low-educated than high-educated who die at a similar age.

Why people in Iceland outlast the rest of the world – Today – 16-Feb-2016
Iceland is one of the top-ranked countries for life expectancy.
Possible factors are fish-heavy diet, low pollution and athletic lifestyle.
Decode Genetics think it could be good Viking genes – harsh conditions in past centuries mean only tough genes have survived.

Why rich people live longer – New York Times – 12-Feb-2016
Longevity gap between high-income and low-income Americans has been widening sharply.
Life expectancy difference for top/bottom 50% earners has increased from 1.2 years in 1970s to 5.8 years in 2001.
Difference between top 10% and bottom 10% income now 14 years.
Greater declines in smoking among the affluent and educated may partly explain the difference.
More complicated relationship for obesity, prescription drugs and access to health care.

Over-65s in England living longer than ever before – BBC News – 12-Feb-2016
Latest figures released by Public Health England.
At 65 men can expect to live for another 19 years and women a further 21 years.
Life expectancy increased by 0.3 years between 2013 and 2014 – so for every year lived you get 4 months free!

Lifespan Machine studies random variation in worm death (VIDEO) – STAT – 2-Feb-2016
Fascinating video of analysis of differences in lifespan of identical organisms.
Harvard Medical School experiment tracks 10,000s of tiny C. elegans worms simultaneously.
Uses 100s petri dishes in 50 scanners.
Each individual worm scanned every hour.
Worms age similarly to humans – get slower and fatter.
Genetically identical and in identical environment – but die at different times.
Spread not driven by genetics.
Random range stretches whether improve or worsen conditions or genes.

Nobel scientist thinks we can live to 150 – The Telegraph – 20-Jan-2016
Dr Elizabeth Blackburn won the Nobel Prize in 2009 for research on telomeres and the genetics of ageing.
Centenarians don’t die of common diseases – it looks like a systems failure.
There are currently 200 clinical trials exploring ways to slow the ageing process by means of molecular changes.

Are We Hitting A Life Expectancy Plateau? – Longevity Reporter – 4-Jan-2016
Average lifespans may be rising maximum years are unchanged.
Even in the ancient world some lived to 80 years old but was a rarer event.
A good social life, work life balance, optimal nutrition and current medical care can only do so much.
Only influencing fundamental aging processes will life expectancy continue to rise.

Spit test could predict life expectancy – University of Birmingham – 23-Dec-2015
Lower levels of antibodies in saliva are associated with of an elevated risk of mortality.
Study highlighted underlying association between secretory immunoglobulin A (IgA) and cancer mortality.
639 adults aged 63 years old at the time of saliva sampling in 1995 tracked over 19 years.

Life expectancy: Is the party over? – BBC News – 11-Dec-2015
Higher than expected death rates among older people in 2012 and 2013.
Last year, flu vaccinations were not as successful – may be a temporary phenomenon.
Average life expectancy of 100 forecast pushed back 2 years to 2062.
Increasing obesity or antibiotic resistance might slow or even halt the trend to improving life expectancy.

100 orgasms may increase life expectancy by three to eight years – Women’s Weekly – 26-Nov-2015
Article says based on “latest research” – I’ve not checked it but, hey, it’s a Friday story!
Sex lowers blood pressure, improves cholesterol, and increases circulation.
People who indulge in regular sex 50% less likely to have heart attack or stroke.
Regular orgasms even dramatically reduces the incidence of the common cold.

Higher pulse equals higher risk of death – Telegraph – 23-Nov-2015
Risk of dying increases by around nine per cent for every extra 10 beats per minute
Independent of traditional risk factors of cardiovascular disease.
Meta-study of 46 studies involving 1.2 million people over 21 years.
Optimum pulse rate varies by sex and age but, in summary, to get into the excellent rating you need to be below 65 BPM.

Study Links Daily Coffee Habit To Longevity – NPR – 16-Nov-2015
Study highlights association, not causation.
People who drank 3-5 cups of coffee per day had about a 15 percent lower [risk of premature] mortality.
More than 4 cups can interfere with sleep and create feelings of unease.
Amount of caffeine in a cup of coffee varies so does individual sensitivity.
Similar benefits from caffeinated and decaffeinated coffee.
Coffee bean itself is loaded with many different nutrients and phytochemicals.
Reduced risk of death was not seen among the coffee drinkers in your study who were smokers or former smokers.

Dutch cyclists have longer lives – BBC News – 11-oct-2015
University of Utrecht finds that cycling 74 minutes per week increases life expectancy by 6 months.
Mortality rate reduced by 10% resulting in 6500 deaths prevented each year.
Claim 1 hour cycled is 1 hour extra life.
Here’s how I assume the calculation works:
74 minutes = 1.2 hrs
Cycle every week for 70 years = 1.2 x 52 x 70 = 3640 hours
6 months = 4380 hours
Looks like a good investment!

Schoolchildren could be working until they’re 100 – Telegraph – 6-Oct-2015
Rohit Talwar of Fast Future will be addressing nearly 300 headteachers at the Headmasters’ and Headmistresses’ Conference.
Predicts future that could see them having to work 40 different jobs with many occupations being taken over by robots.
New industries will emerge but fewer jobs will be available to new generations

Work stress can have massive impact on life expectancy – Behavioral Science & Policy Association – 8-Sep-2015
Meta-study carried out by Harvard Business School and Stanford University analyzed 228 different studies.
Over 40% increase in mortality for those with low job control.
Working long hours results in 19% increase in mortality.
Worse than regular exposure to secondhand smoke.

Live 4 years get 1 free! – Japan Times – 28-Aug-2015
Average life expectancy around the world has increased from 65 years in 1990 to 71.5 years in 2013. So for every 4 years lived your life expectancy increases by 1 year – when those figures are the same everyone is living forever!
Japan came out with best health span – before people need regular care.

Life expectancy gap between rich and poor reduced in UK – The Guardian – 11-Aug-2015
People in the richest 10% of UK live 4.4 years longer compared to those in the poorest 10% areas. Results in 2010 reduced significantly from 2003 study when gap was 6.9 years.

More trees = more life in large city study – Washington Post – 9-Jul-2015
Study of city of 530,000 trees in Toronto compared to 30,000 residents health records.
11 more trees per city block has same effect as being 1.4 years younger for cardio-metabolic conditions.
Probably due to improved air quality as trees remove ozone and particulates.

Women haven’t always lived longer than men – The Independent – 7-Jul-2015
Once infectious diseases conquered, deaths from cancer and cardiovascular disease (which affect men more than women) amplify life expectancy difference in 50 to 70 year olds.

Skeletal muscle mass key factor in determining life expectancy  – Taipei Times – 17-Jun-2015
Underweight elderly people have double the mortality rate of others.
Exercising regularly is the best solution to prevent the onset of muscle mass loss which accelerates above 50.

The rich get older – Cosmos – 1-Jun-2015
Gains in US life expectancy mostly benefiting those with higher income.
Income is the single biggest predictor of longevity.

European Focus project aims to increase life expectancy in the EU by two years – Medical Xpres – 13-May-2015
goal is to create mechanisms to be ahead of vulnerability to illness, or even of death

Men ‘catching up’ on life expectancy – BBC News – 30-Apr-15
Closing the gap on women. By 2030 men will be living 85.7 years on average compare to 79.5 in 2012.
In 18 years life expectancy has increased by 6 years – that’s huge.

Why do Israelis live longer despite stress? – YNetNews – 26-Apr-15
Geriatrics professor Devora Lieberman puts it down to awareness of preventive medicine and proper nutrition – eating food rich in fibers and low on sodium and fat.

Men born in 1913 followed to age 100 years – Scandinavian Cardiovascular Journal – Feb-2015
Survival was related to non-smoking, mothers’ high age at death, high social class and previous high physical working capacity.

Higher death rate ‘driven by flu’ – BBC News – 4-Feb-15

UK centenarian numbers on the rise – BBC News – 25-Sep-14

Human mortality beyond age 110 – Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research (MPIDR) – 2010
After age 110 mortality rates level off corresponding to an annual probability of death of 50%

 

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