Why are Lifespans Getting Longer?

why are lifespans getting longer

Life expectancy continues to grow longer, as human existence grows older.

So why are lifespans getting longer?

Our knowledge of health, medicine, and social needs gets stronger every day, and as our awareness of what humanity needs to survive increases, so do our lifespans.

Advances in technology and medicine are the primary reasons that lifespans are getting longer.

But why do we have lifespans that are expected to be much longer than our grandparents?

Only 150 years ago, a 40-year-old was considered an elderly member of society. Now, they would be middle age.

We can expect to live almost twice as long as our great-great-grandparents, and although immortality is still far away, scientists have made leaps and bounds in furthering technology to keep our physical bodies and cells younger, longer.

Data has shown that the average life expectancy for people born in 2020 is approximately 72 years. Yet scientists have predicted that there will be an added 5 years on babies born in 2050.

Why Will Life Expectancy Be Longer in 2050?

Why Will Life Expectancy Be Longer in 2050

Technological Advancements

As both medicine and science grow, so does the technology to save the lives of people with medical conditions that would have cut their lives shorter.

Gene therapy is the newest and most innovative technology that members of the scientific community are researching to try to slow aging in DNA by introducing edited genes into the body.

Some scientists have been exploring options of artificial organs and tissues that function exactly the same as human organs and tissues.

As this technology grows in the coming decades, it can be assumed that countless lives will be saved and that the waiting lists for organ transplants will become shorter.

Tiny surgical lasers have been developed in past years that can perform surgeries that were once considered too risky. These types of surgeries are becoming more frequent and have the potential to grow into a much bigger industry.

Medical Development

Cures to diseases that used to infect and kill large populations of at-risk people are being developed and lives will be saved and lengthened in the coming decades due to these medicines.

Birth defects will become easier to fix in the coming decades, due to the ability to detect issues in development while the fetus is still in utero.

Solving birth problems will dramatically affect the length of a child’s life, as well as the parents’.

Will Life Expectancy Continue to Increase?

Will Life Expectancy Continue to Increase

We can assume that as science and knowledge grow, human life expectancy will as well. If we look back, we can see how far human life expectancy has grown over the past 2 centuries.

Death during childbirth has decreased significantly over the past century, and continues to go down. Preventing child mortality in the future will help increase human life expectancy.

The lifestyle of humanity has changed as well.

In recent years, more people have begun to eat less meat, get more exercise, and take care of their mental health.

Politicians like Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez promote gardening and taking care of the Earth while growing fresh and healthy produce.

 

Mental health has become a hot topic that has spread awareness about the need to take care of your mind along with your body.

The importance of relaxation and taking time to de-stress has lead to many people beginning to meditate and take time to assess their mental health.

Smoking tobacco has decreased since the 1900s, although the rise of electronic cigarettes and vape devices like Juuls could lower the life span of people who use them.

There hasn’t been enough research to prove whether electronic cigarettes are truly better than tobacco cigarettes, but it is assumed by many scientists that they are both bad for the cells and health of the lungs and body.

As we grow, so do the trials of survival. The lifespan of the planet itself is now in question.

Questions about drinking water, land, rising ocean tides, and famine are being discussed by researchers and scientists to try to find methods of combating these issues to keep human life expectancy growing steadily, as it has been for over 120 years.

The general assumption, however, is that human lives will continue to be longer as the generations continue, and the technology to increase life expectancy will continue to become better.

Why is Australia’s Life Expectancy Increasing?

Why is Australia’s Life Expectancy Increasing

Although globally, the life expectancy has grown, Australia has made the greatest improvement.

Australia has seen a 25+ addition to the general life expectancy in the past 90 years, one of the fastest countries to improve the lifespan of its citizens. The average life expectancy was around 60 for both men and women and now rests in the low 80s.

Lifestyle Changes

In the 1950s and 60s, many Australians were dying because of smoking and overuse of alcohol. In the 70s, many dropped these habits, particularly men. These changes along with better work conditions and safer roadways have lead to longer life expectancy.

Social Reform

In the past 90 years, more women have joined the workforce, and more Australians are working longer. Additionally, a shift from labor to desk jobs has lengthened the lives of workers.

Less physically demanding work means a higher retirement age, keeping Australians active in their communities and engaged, which helps to increase lifespan.

There are still some inequities, however. Indigenous Australians have an average lifespan of 10 years less than non-indigenous Australians.

Even though the gendered difference in life expectancy has decreased from men having 7 years less than women to 4, a whole population of people have not been provided the tools to increase their life expectancy.

This kind of racial injustice is seen around the globe with indigenous and minority populations being neglected, and not receiving the same forms of education as the majority of the population.

Education and Prevention

New generations have been taught about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse and cigarettes. Politicians have set up campaigns to discourage young people from picking up these habits.

The percent of avoidable deaths in Australia fell 46% from 1997 to 2017, and Australia now ranks in the top 10 of life expectancies in the world with an average lifespan of 82.5.

As human life changes and grows, so do the trials that we are put through. But, humanity has always managed to come out on top, full of the potential to grow.

During this COVID-19 pandemic, many people are becoming aware of how important life is, and how quickly it can be taken away.

Yet it also shows how capable humanity is at adapting and overcoming issues.

The scientists working to formulate vaccines are proof of humanity’s ability to grow.

Although we are faced with a tremendous issue, science and technology are there to help our lives continue, and to ensure that there will be future generations that will live longer than we could possibly imagine.

Chris Watson

I'm the founder of EatForLonger.Com. I'm an enthusiast researching and sharing foodstuff and lifestyle based insights. Simple food based concepts for optimising your Healthspan, nutrition and all-round well-being. I hope it inspires you to make tiny changes and add some life to your years. Read more About Me here

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