People are living longer, as we all know.
The average lifespan of a U.S. woman is just over 82 years, a man, just over 77. But outside of the U.S., people are actually living much longer than they are here. Japanese men and women tend to live five and three years longer than their U.S. counterparts, respectively.
Data from the World Health Organization tells us which countries are the best for old women, and which ones are no countries for old men. (Of course, women live longer than men in most places.)
Sadly, you can’t just move somewhere with a long life expectancy and expect to live longer. But if you make new friends in, say, Iceland, Japan, Spain, Switzerland or Singapore, and if you live long, your friends will be less likely to die and leave you behind.
Some nations have made huge gains in life expectancy, WHO reports.
“Low-income countries have made the greatest progress, with an average increase in life expectancy by 9 years from 1990 to 2012. The top six countries where life expectancy increased the most were Liberia, which saw a 20-year increase (from 42 years in 1990 to 62 years in 2012) followed by Ethiopia (from 45 to 64 years), Maldives (58 to 77 years), Cambodia (54 to 72 years), Timor-Leste (50 to 66 years) and Rwanda (48 to 65 years),” said the report.
“An important reason why global life expectancy has improved so much is that fewer children are dying before their fifth birthday,” said Dr. Margaret Chan, WHO director-general. “But there is still a major rich-poor divide: people in high-income countries continue to have a much better chance of living longer than people in low-income countries.”
Indeed, life expectancy for both men and women is still less than 55 years in nine sub-Saharan African countries – Angola, Central African Republic, Chad, Côte d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of the Congo, Lesotho, Mozambique, Nigeria and Sierra Leone, WHO says.
On that note, let’s have the 10 countries where women live the longest:
(Photos: Getty Images).
1. Japan, 87
2. Spain, 85
3. Switzerland, 85
Photo: Torii gate at Miyajima, Japan.
4. Singapore, 85
5. Italy, 85
6. France, 84.9
Photo: Leaning Tower of Pisa, Cathedral Santa Maria Assunta, Tuscany, Italy.
7. Australia, 84.6
8. Republic of Korea, 84.6
9. Luxemborg, 84
10. Portugal, 84
Photo: Porto, Portugal.
And for the menfolk, here are the leading nations:
1. Iceland, 81
2. Switzerland, 80.7
3. Australia, 80.5
Photo: A kangaroo road sign, Victoria, Great Ocean Road, Australia.
4. Israel, 80
5. Singapore, 80
6. New Zealand, 80
Photo: Dome of the Rock in Jerusalem, Israel.
7. Italy, 80
8. Japan, 80
9. Sweden, 80
10. Luxemborg, 79.7
Photo: Gothenburg, Sweden.