1. Life expectancy is a statistical average of the number of years a human is expected to live; this will vary according to region and era. In the Bronze and Iron Age life expectancy was 26; the 2010 world average was 67.2. In Swaziland the average is 49.42 years; in Japan it is 82.6 years. The combination of high infant mortality and deaths in young adulthood from accidents, epidemics, plagues, wars, and childbirth, particularly before modern medicine was widely available, significantly lowers the overall life expectancy. But for those who survive early hazards, a life expectancy of sixty or seventy would not be uncommon. For example, a society with a life expectancy of 40 may have few people dying at age 40: most will die before 30 years of age or after 55. In countries with high infant mortality rates, life expectancy at birth is highly sensitive to the rate of death in the first few years of life. Because of this sensitivity to infant mortality, simple life expectancy at age zero can be subjected to gross misinterpretation, leading one to believe that a population with a low overall life expectancy will necessarily have a small proportion of older people. For example, in a hypothetical stationary population in which half the population dies before the age of five, but everybody else dies at exactly 70 years old, the life expectancy at age zero will be about 36 years, while about 25% of the population will be between the ages of 50 and 70... Life expectancy differs from maximum life span. Life expectancy is an average, computed over all people including those who die shortly after birth, those who die in early adulthood in childbirth or in wars, and those who live unimpeded until old age, whereas lifespan is an individual-specific concept and maximum lifespan is an upper bound rather than an average.
2. Life expectancy in countries around the world is growing, according to a new report from the World Health Organization, with most of the progress apparent in low-income countries. WHO said that in high-income countries, most of the gain in life expectancy is credited to fewer people dying before age 60 from heart disease and stroke.
For men, the top three countries for life expectancy in 2012 were: Iceland 81.2, Switzerland 80.7, and Australia, 80.5. For women, the top countries were: Japan 87.0, Spain 85.1, and Switzerland 85.1.
In the USA
1. Average life expectancy in the United States reached an all-time high of 78.8 years in 2012, federal officials reported Wednesday Oct. 8, 2014. The increased life expectancy is likely due to Americans living healthier lifestyles, according to researchers from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
2. Americans' life expectancy rates are at a record high, but suicide rates are on the rise, according to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report released on Wednesday Oct. 8, 2014. The study, which looked at 2012 U.S. mortality data, found Americans are expected to live longer than ever: life expectancy from birth reached 78.8 years, a .01 increase from the previous year. As was the case in 2011, women were expected to live longer than men by 4.8 years. Part of the reason why life expectancy has increased is because of the decreasing infant mortality rate, or the rate of infant deaths to live births per year.
3. More on USA
1. In Canada, average life expectancy for males born in 2012 is 80 and for females 84, the agency said in Thursday’s report, World Health Statistics 2014. In comparison, males born in Canada in 1990 could expect to live to 74 and females to 81 on average. For both sexes in Canada, life expectancy increased on average from 77 in 1990 to 82 in 2012.
2. More on Canada
In the UK
1. While the average life expectancy in the world is 67 years, Iran's rate is six percent above the world average at 72 years, says a high-ranking health official in Iran. In a workshop on life expectancy in faculty of Medicine in Shiraz University, Dr Kamran Baqeri Lankarani, the head of the Center of Research for Health Polices in the Iranian Fars Province, said, "Life expectancy in some advanced countries is more than 82 years, and Iran can cover these 10 years of difference with certain precautions." He mentioned that life expectancy is one of the three main factors considered for human development as it is linked to health system and health in the society.
"The other two factors are literacy and average income. Iran is ranked seventh among the middle-ranking countries in the world, for which we should reach the level for advanced countries at the end of the five-year plan," he added. Lankarani said the provinces of Tehran and Gilan have the highest life expectancy in Iran while the lowest belongs to Sistan and Baluchestan (Reported on Jul 15, 2010).
2. In 2012 the life expectancy in Iran increased to 73.76 years. That year, the life expectancy for women was 75.75 years and for men 71.87 years. Iran’s position improvened in 2012.
1. In comparing the life expectancy figures of American males and females, it must be noted that the relative higher figure for the females may be due to the fact that the American females usually have a careful healthier life than the males. Besides, American females generally reacts quickly to their health problems and go to visit a physision.
2. The relative higher figures in Canada as compared to the USA, are most likely related to the differences of health care services in these two countries. Most Canadians have a Medicare, an unofficial name for Canada's publicly funded universal health insurance system.
3. In Iran, the relative higher figure in Tehran may be due to more accessible health services as compared to the other cities. However, Tehran suffers a very polluted air. Gilan province, on the other hand, enjoys a fresh air and may have much cleaner and healthier environment than other provinces.
Manouchehr Saadat Noury, PhD
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