Income and Where You Live Determine Your Lifespan

"Seattle skyline"

It’s no secret that the more stress-free your life is, the more you’ll live. But stress or lack thereof isn’t the only thing to contribute to your life span. Experiencing awe-inspiring moments, satisfying as many desires as you can, and of course living a healthy life all lead to you living a longer life on average.

And what particular social class has the possibility to live their lives most in accord with those tenets? It’s the rich, of course. And understandably, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, income and where you live determine your lifespan.

The study was a meta-analysis performed by researchers at Harvard, Stanford, and MIT, and it looked at the records of more than one billion people. As stated, it concluded that where you live, as well as your income, are highly influential on how much you live; the richer you are and the more advanced the place you live in, the more you’ll live.

In fact, from a statistical point of view, American men in the top 1 percent live on average fifteen years more than those in the bottom one percent. For scale, American citizens in the bottom one percent have the same life expectancy as the regular folk in Sudan or Pakistan.

Meanwhile, the statistics aren’t stationary. In fact, they seem to change by the year, with the life expectancy of the poorest five percent remaining stationary, while that of the top five percent growing by 2.3 years since last year. But the place of residence is also very important in determining how much you have left to live.

For example, while in Alabama low income folk are living about as much as the rich people in the state, in Florida the life expectancy is steadily dropping. On the other hand, San Francisco seems to promote longer lifespans in general, regardless of your income.

The reason behind the disparities remains unknown, but speculations are of course par for the course. One of the most plausible reasons would be that living in a metropolis can get you to live healthier lifestyle, with stuff like smoking bans. It’s also possible that if everybody around you is trying to life a healthier life style, you might feel psychologically compelled to also partake.

After looking over the data of the 1.4 billion people, the team also approached the subject of insurance, or Social Security and Medicare. The harped on how those with a lower income should not pay the same insurance as those with a much higher income, since they are paying into system without obviously getting the same benefits.

Image source: Pixabay