The Britons predict the end of the era of “merry widows”, during which the average life expectancy of women has been much higher than that of men. This figure is expected to be equal in just 5 years.
According to the Office for National Statistics, UK, the men, who celebrated their 65th birthday last year, can expect to live, on average, till the age of 83, while their female peers are expected to live to be 86. The difference in life expectancy between men and women is gradually reducing, and for the past 10 years, the gap has decreased from 3 to 2.5 years. However, this reduction does not occur uniformly throughout the country. For example, the gap has narrowed to just one year in Hampshire, and it will completely disappear as early as 2015.
But in the south of England, this difference will last for a while, but then it will be gone too. According to experts from the Office of National Statistics, the narrowing gap in life expectancy between men and women is explained by the marked improvement in the health of men. For example, in 1960 men smoked more often than women, but over the past half century the number of smokers among men has decreased markedly.
From 1979 to 2009, the number of deaths directly caused by smoking has dropped by as much as 64%. Mortality from lung cancer, trachea and bronchus cancer reduced by 39% from 1991 to 2005 among men older than 49 years. The stronger sex in the UK has become much less likely to die because of the reasons related to alcohol abuse, as well as cardiovascular diseases. Still, heart diseases kill twice as many men than women. Furthermore, high levels of testosterone in men lead to the fact that they often die in various accidents (including violent deaths).
The male children, born in the period from 2010 to 2012, can hope for an average life expectancy of 79 years, while women can live up to the age of 82 years.