My Aunt Elizabeth was a beautiful, elegant woman, always surrounded by admirers. But her love life was a real mystery. She had been married four times, and she had been widowed each time. At first, people thought it was bad luck. Soon rumors of strange happenings began to spread. Friends said my aunt had a spell that caused her husband to die after marriage.
The opinion of others was something my aunt wasn’t concerned about at all. Until her passing, she continued to live as elegantly as ever. When someone asked her about her late husbands, she would smile. “There’s nothing strange. Science agrees that men live shorter lives than women,” Aunt Elizabeth would say.
According to the World Health Organization, life expectancy for men worldwide is 69.1 years. And women, 73.8 years.
What is the reason? The women tend to drink less, work less dangerous jobs, see more doctors, and undergo more tests. In addition to weight loss treatments and various surgeries to look young “forever.”
Female hormones strengthen a woman’s immune system. Estrogen acts in the female body as an antioxidant. They protect it from free radicals and toxic substances that stress the cells. And it prevents cardiovascular disease, which is more common in men. Women have a hormone replacement, which leads to more extended longevity. Hormone levels protect against heart disease, even after menopause.
In contrast, testosterone hurts male aging. For example, testosterone is associated with prostate cancer. And in addition, it alters cardiovascular function and leads to hypertension and arteriosclerosis.
Men engage in unsafe behaviors more often than women. Smoking, excessive alcohol consumption, and dangerous activities reduce life expectancy.
Women seek regular medical care consistently. They also follow doctors’ recommendations more regularly than men. In some cultures, men do not discuss health issues and rarely seek medical care—delays in diagnosis and treatment lead to severe illness and death.