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Gender Differences in Balkan's Life Expectancy

Mon, 10/05/2015 - 12:22 By Sanja Stamenkovic, Jefferson Institute

Life expectancy is defined as an average number of years a person would live if mortality rates remain constant in the future. Average life expectancy for persons born between 2010 and 2013 in the whole world is 71 years, according to the World Population Prospects.

The figures for the each country directly reflects the country's healthcare system, wars and HIV infections. Thus, persons in the developed countries live much longer than those in the developing world. People in Japan are expected to live an average of 84 years (87 for women, and 80 for men). On the other hand, in some African countries like Angola and Zambia, where HIV and tuberculosis incidence are high, average life span is less than 40 years. 

When it comes to the Balkans, average life expectancy for both genders is 75 years for Serbia, and 74 years for Bulgaria. 

According to the National Statistical Institute of the Republic of Bulgaria and Statistical Office of the Republic of Serbia, life span for women in Serbia and Bulgaria range from 75.85 to 79.15. The longest will live women born in the region of Sofia town - more than 79 years. Life expectancy for men range from 68.48 to 73.78. The regions to grow oldest are the regions of Central Serbia - Belgrade region, Sumadija and Moravice - more than 73 years. 

Although Balkan residents live longer than a world's average, they are far from the EU average. Average EU citizen born in 2013 can expect to live a little over 77 years, according to Eurostat. The cause of approximately 3-year difference between the Balkans and the EU life expectancy is probably the consequence of the unhealthy lifestyle of the Balkan's residents. Physical inactivity, smoking, alcohol consumption and obesity are the leading causes of heart diseases responsible for the vast part of the fatalities

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