Average life expectancy set to increase, scientists say

By Aleksandra Piotrow


South Koreans will live to 90, while British people will only live for 83.5 years. / Pexels

Average life expectancy is set to increase in many countries by 2030, says a new study by Imperial College London and WHO.

The study analysed both high-income countries as well as emerging economies. It used long-term data on mortality and longevity trends to predict future life expectancy.

All 35 industrialised countries that were examined in the study can expect an increase in life expectancy, with South Korea’s exceeding 90 years. That is said to be thanks to good nutrition in childhood, low blood pressure, low levels of smoking, good access to healthcare, and an uptake of new medical knowledge and technologies.

In Europe, French women and Swiss men take the lead on the table with 88.6 years and 84 years life expectancy respectively.

British women placed 21 out of 35 countries with an average life expectancy at birth of 83.5 years. Men placed 14th on the table with an average expectancy of 82.5 years.

The United States were at the end of the list with the shortest predicted life expectancy in 2030 amongst high-income countries. The research team say this may be due to the US having the highest child and maternal mortality rate, homicide rate and obesity among high-income countries.

The gap in life expectancy between men and women is also predicted to be closing.

Professor Majid Ezzati told Imperial College London News that many believe 90 years is the upper limit for life expectancy, but the research shows that it will soon be broken. “I don’t believe we’re anywhere near the upper limit of life expectancy – if there even is one,” he said.