Sex and longevity: Why women live longer than men.

Authors

  • Milagros S. Peck North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Amber T Porter North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Breanna D Hayes Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Dammah Otieno Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Angelina J Hargrove Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Cynethia C Mayhand North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Anisa I Johnson Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University
  • Lynda M Brown North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.47611/jsr.v6i1.286

Keywords:

sex differences, longevity, estrogen, testosterone

Abstract

Sex differences in lifespan exist in most countries in the world, with women outliving men. This difference has existed for as long as records have been kept.  This gap is not a uniquely human phenomenon; it exists in many animals as well.  This is an important health issue that is not fully understood.  Aging is a complex process.  In this review we will examine the scientific basis for sex differences by focusing on four hypotheses that begin with examining why women are different from men.  Men and women differ in our DNA.  Women have two X chromosomes and men have an X and Y sex chromosome.  Women have a second copy of the genes on the X chromosome which could be protective.  Other hypotheses focus on the physiological difference between the sexes that result from the ratio of our sex hormones.  Estrogen physiology changes women’s body shape, affects the major organs like the heart and as a result impacts longevity.  Sex differences in longevity are important because this becomes a lens for us to examine nutrition, health and wellness.

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Author Biographies

Milagros S. Peck, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Graduate Student

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Amber T Porter, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Graduated in May 2015 with her MS in the

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Breanna D Hayes, Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Graduate Student

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Dammah Otieno, Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Graduate Student

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Angelina J Hargrove, Graduate Student Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Graduate Student

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Cynethia C Mayhand, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

MA in Teaching Graduate Student

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Anisa I Johnson, Food and Nutritional Sciences Program North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Research Apprenticeship Program Participant- 2015

Currently a High School Student

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Lynda M Brown, North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University

Associate Professor

Department of Family and Consumer Sciences

Food and Nutritional Sciences Program

Published

2017-06-13

How to Cite

Peck, M. S., Porter, A. T., Hayes, B. D., Otieno, D., Hargrove, A. J., Mayhand, C. C., Johnson, A. I., & Brown, L. M. (2017). Sex and longevity: Why women live longer than men. Journal of Student Research, 6(1), 19-23. https://doi.org/10.47611/jsr.v6i1.286

Issue

Section

Review Articles