The Other I

May 18, 2010

Six ways to live longer

Filed under: Uncategorized — theotheri @ 3:50 pm

I heard a feminist on the BBC claim the other day that married men live longer than unmarried men, but that it’s just the opposite for married women.

I think she is misinformed.  Research on this topic began at least fifteen years ago and stretches across continents.  Both married men and married women live longer, on average, than their unmarried counterparts.  The difference is greater for men though, than for women.

There are a lot of theories about why marriage seems to be particularly good for men.  They may adopt less risky life styles, their wives might nag them to see a doctor when something is wrong, and women might make sure that they eat properly.  The only hypothesis I’ve read about why marriage seems good for women is that it makes them financially more secure.  I personally think there is a little more to it than that.

However, although I’m happily married, I would not recommend getting married in order to extent one’s life expectancy or to raise ones happiness quotient.

Here are a few other alternatives which might not be worth the effort either:

  • Churchgoers live longer
  • So do optimists
  • Republicans are happier than Democrats
  • Eating and drinking less, and exercising more increases longevity.
  • So does a good set of genes.

On the other hand, research suggests that the odds of dying are:  100%


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