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Average life expectancy to exceed 90 by 2030

23/02/2017

Average life expectancy to exceed 90 by 2030South Korean women will become the first people in the world to have an average life expectancy above 90, according to a new study published in The Lancet.

The study, conducted by Imperial College London and the World Health Organisation, analysed the lifespans of people living in 35 industrialised countries.

In each country analysed, the average life expectancy is expected to increase by 2030 and the gap between men and women will start to close in most countries.

"As recently as the turn of the century, many researchers believed that life expectancy would never surpass 90 years," said study lead author Majid Ezzati in a journal news release. Ezzati is a professor at Imperial College London's School of Public Health in England.

"Our predictions of increasing life spans," he added, "highlight our public health and health care successes. However, it is important that policies to support the growing older population are in place."

The biggest issue for governments, say the researchers, will be how they overcome the challenges associated with pensions and care for elderly people.

Equality of life, say the researchers, is the secret to South Korea's success, with things like education and nutrition benefitting most people in the country. Furthermore, South Korea is better at dealing with hypertension and has some of the lowest obesity rates in the whole of the world.

Surprisingly, Japan, which currently has the longest life expectancy for women, is expected to tumble down the rankings going forward and be overtaken by both South Korea and France.

By 2030, the US will have the shortest life expectancy of all the rich countries analysed for the research.
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