International Data Demonstrating the Inverse Height and Life Expectancy Between the Sexes

Height and life expectancy

  • Thomas Theodore Samaras Reventropy Associates
  • Stephen M Marson University of North Carolina
  • John Porter Lillis University of North Carolina
Keywords: Gender Differences, Life Expectancy, Height,, Mortality, Longevity, Body Size, Telomeres


Many papers have provided reasons for why women live longer than men. These include XX vs. XY chromosomes, sex hormones, and better care of their health. These factors certainly can affect male and female health but none has been proven to explain the actual difference that exists in life expectancy between the sexes. Another controversial factor commonly ignored is the size difference between men and women, but past research has shown that differences in male and female height and associated life expectancy are related by similar but inverse percentages (such as 8% taller and 9% shorter life expectancy). This paper provides additional evidence that supports early findings that shorter height is a major factor in explaining why women live longer. To test the inverse relationship between height and life expectancy, a list of developed countries was used to compare height and life expectancy differences between men and women. The results showed men were 7.8% taller and had an 8.5% lower life expectancy. These results are similar to previous study findings in 1992, 2003, and 2009. They are also consistent with scores of studies showing shorter or smaller body size is related to greater longevity independent of sex.


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Author Biographies

Thomas Theodore Samaras, Reventropy Associates

Longevity Researcher, Reventropy Associates. 11487 Madera Rosa Way, San Diego, California, 92124

Stephen M Marson, University of North Carolina

Professor Emeritus Sociology, the University of North Carolina at Pembroke,

John Porter Lillis, University of North Carolina

Assistant Professor Sociology, University of North Carolina at Pembroke,


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How to Cite
Samaras, T. T., Marson, S. M., & Lillis, J. P. (2019). International Data Demonstrating the Inverse Height and Life Expectancy Between the Sexes. SOCIALSCI JOURNAL, 4, 1-9. Retrieved from
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