Average Life Expectancy : Measuring yours
BOSTON, MA – With the first baby boomers entering their 60s, issues of life expectancy and quality of life are more important than ever. There's plenty of good news for the "abbies" (aging baby boomers): Disability rates are falling, and research shows that older Americans are staying healthy for much longer than ever before, says the Harvard Health Letter.
According to the latest figures, average life expectancy in the United States is 77.6 years, compared with 75.4 in 1990, reports the July issue of the Harvard Health Letter. Furthermore, old age begets older age. Today, a 65-year-old American man can expect to live to 81.6; if he reaches the age of 85, he can expect to live to see 90. Women still outlive men—although the gap is closing—but the same demographic pattern holds. Old age adds to life expectancy.
However, compared with people in other countries, Americans aren't doing so well. American males and females rank 12th and 15th, respectively, in life expectancy at age 65. The United States also lags when it comes to years spent in good health. The Harvard Health Letter cites findings of a recent study comparing the health of people ages 55–64 in England and the United States. Americans were found to be less healthy than their English counterparts, with higher rates of cancer, diabetes, high blood pressure, lung disease, and stroke.