What is the Average Life Expectancy in America?
The United States has many demographic aspects that have significant regional variations, and life expectancy is one of them. Life expectancy in the United States varies by decades, and health expectancy is similar.
Interactive maps show details
While how long you are likely to live is at least partially based on where in the United States you live, there are also other factors that impact this. As we mentioned in our article What is the Average Life Expectancy Worldwide?, individual lifespan can be influenced by many variables. such as education, income, socializing, diet, lifestyle, and exercise.
This first interactive map below shows the average American life expectancy by state or county. If you select a county or state, it will show how that county/state compares to the best and the worst in the US along with what other counties/states are similar. There is also a normal curve that shows where your selected county/state falls in comparison to all others.
Living sicker for longer
Almost every state in the US has seen increased life expectancy in the last 30 years, but, unfortunately, very few of those extra years are healthy ones. Lifespan determines how long we live, but the time spent free from disease is known as healthspan.
This second interactive map shows US life expectancy and healthy life expectancy from 1990-2019. This map and its accompanying graphs are also designed to highlight comparisons. There are two visualizations that show where increases in lifespan have resulted in either healthy life or unhealthy life.
Despite the recent gains in life expectancy in some states, there has also been a drop in life expectancy in others. The modern lifestyle is likely a significant factor in this. If you are curious, you can find out more about the leading causes of death in our “The Causes of Death Worldwide” article.
Can we increase healthspan as well as lifespan?
Given current trajectories showing that many people are now living longer but not in good health, can we change that trend for the better?
That’s something that scientists are working on right now. There is a relatively new branch of science called rejuvenation biotechnology, or geroscience, which aims to help people live longer and healthier. It aims to achieve this by delaying, preventing, or even reversing age-related diseases by directly targeting the reasons we age.
“Healthy longevity” could be a pleasant side effect of making an older person biologically younger. If successful, life expectancy would almost certainly rise. The aim of rejuvenation biotechnology is to make chronologically old and chronologically young people, at every physical level, indistinguishable from one another.
Imagine if scientists could find ways to keep our immune systems healthy and working even when we are older. Every day, our immune systems search for viruses, bacteria, and cancer cells to keep us safe. However, as we age, our immune systems become weaker and less effective.
This is why cancer rates, risks for other diseases, and frailty rise significantly after age 60. Even the common flu can become life-threatening to an elderly person whose immune system is not functioning properly.
Rejuvenating the immune system could potentially prevent age-related diseases and help us to stay vital and healthy despite our age. This is an example of how rejuvenation biotechnology might help us to achieve longer, healthier lives.
Lifespan.io is a non-profit that advocates for this approach to aging. Through problem solving and engineering, humans have increased the average human lifespan, and we believe that an engineering approach applied to the causes of aging will continue to help our species make further progress.
It is our hope that in the future, with successful breakthroughs in research, increased healthy longevity and life expectancy will be something that everyone can enjoy regardless of where they live.
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