SEOUL, Aug. 24 (Korea Bizwire) – Among the members of the OECD, the lifespan of Korean men is shorter compared to Korean women, as well as men of other countries.
The main factors that contributed to lower life expectancies for Korean men were the high smoking rate and stress levels.
It is a well known fact that women live longer than men. According to a report titled ‘Health Data 2015′ issued by the OECD, the average life expectancy of women was 83.1 years, while men came in at 77.8 years. Not one country among the 34 members of the OECD had men with a higher average life expectancy compared to women.
There are many factors that influence life expectancy, but smoking is said to have the largest effect. The countries where men had a higher rate of smoking compared to women ranked low when it came to longevity among men.
Turkey (37.3 percent) and Estonia (36.2 percent), which ranked highest in smoking rates among OECD members, ranked 28th (73.7 years) and 31th (72.8 years) respectively when it came to life expectancies.
In addition, the MRC·CSO Public Health Research Institute concluded that 40 percent to 60 percent of the reason why men and women differ in life expectancies is based on smoking, after conducting research on 30 countries in Europe.
However, smoking is not the only factor that influences longevity. According to the book ‘Why Men Die First’, written by professor Marianne J. Legato from Columbia University, hormones and differences in immune systems are also factors that contribute to shorter life expectancies for men. As well, the stress to be ‘manly’ is another factor that shortens male lives. Hormone systems also expose men to a higher chance of heart diseases.
Professor Legato says that while frequent drinking and smoking among men lead to lethal illnesses such as lung cancer and rectal cancer, other research says that the stress that comes from social life is also a factor that exposes men to health risks.
The Korea Institute for Health and Social Affairs explains that cancer and suicide rates are also a factor that influence the life expectancies of men along with smoking and drinking. “When exposed to many social situations, one is likely to get stressed. The danger of getting in an accident grows when one is under a lot of stress.”
By Francine Jung (firstname.lastname@example.org)