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Check out these newly released Special Health Reports from Harvard Medical School
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You can't buy good health but you can buy good health information. Check out these newly released Special Health Reports from Harvard Medical School:

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.

The Health Letter article also includes a quiz that uses information on your health habits, personal characteristics, and medical problems to help you determine your life expectancy.

Also in this issue of the Harvard Health Letter

  • By the way, doctor: How can I avoid dehydration?
  • By the way, doctor: Can you help me make sense of these diabetes tests?
  • This is an earful that nobody wants
  • Getting into the sting of things
  • Lifetime achievements
  • Female life expectancy at 65 in selected countries
  • An under-the-tongue alternative to EpiPen
  • More on stings and ACE inhibitors
  • Life expectancy gains in the United States, at age 65
  • Life expectancy gains in the United States, at birth
  • Links to tinnitus Web sites
  • Links to Web sites related to hearing and hearing loss
  • Male life expectancy at 65 in selected countries
  • Life expectancy gains in the United States, at age 75
  • References to articles about Beethoven’s hearing problems

More Harvard Health News »


About Harvard Health Publications

Harvard Health Publications publishes four monthly newsletters--Harvard Health Letter, Harvard Women's Health Watch, Harvard Men's Health Watch, and Harvard Heart Letter--as well as more than 50 special health reports and books drawing on the expertise of the 8,000 faculty physicians at Harvard Medical School and its world-famous affiliated hospitals.