Average life expectancy is on the rise! A new collaborative study led by the World Health Organization (WHO) and Imperial College London analysed longitudinal data in over 35 industrialised countries and found that by 2030, average life expectancy may exceed 90 years in some countries.
At one point in time, researchers did not believe that average live expectancies will exceed 90 years. Dr. Majid Ezzati explains,
“We repeatedly hear that improvements in human longevity are about to come to an end. Many people used to believe that 90 years is the upper limit for life expectancy, but this research suggests we will break the 90-year-barrier. I don’t believe we’re anywhere near the upper limit of life expectancy – if there even is one.”
Examples of countries included in the study are USA, Canada, the UK, Germany, Australia, Poland, Mexico, and the Czech Republic.
While the study found that all countries studied are expected to see a rise in average life expectancy by 2030, the highest life expectancy was noted in South Korea, where estimates showed that citizens will live over 90 years. More specifically, data showed that a girl born in 2030 in South Korea will be expected to live to 90.8 years, and a boy to 84.1 years.
France and Switzerland were at the top of European country list, with French women having an average life expectancy of 88.6 years and Swiss men of 84 years.Of all high-income countries, USA was predicted to have the lowest life expectancy in 2030, with men expected to live to 79.5 years and women to 83.3 years. These estimates closely resemble other middle-income countries like Croatia and Mexico.
What is contributing to this overall rise in life expectancies? Ezzati attributes a number of factors including improved nutrition, decreased levels of smoking, better healthcare access, and improved medical and technological knowledge.