Why Some Women Can Expect to Die Too Early

Life expectancy is on the decline in certain U.S. counties; here's the reason.

By + More

News about life expectancy, up until now, has been rosy. Both women and men are living longer, six to seven years on average, than they were 40 years ago. A girl born in the U.S. today can expect to live to about 80—not too shabby. Yet a study out this week puts a damper on those numbers, which are just an average of everyone in the country. For folks in some counties, life expectancy is actually decreasing. And the news is particularly bad for women: In 180 counties across the country, women can expect to live to about 73, or about 1.3 years less than they did in 1983, according to data from the National Center for Health Statistics. These counties were primarily located in the deep South along the Mississippi River and in the Appalachian Mountains extending into the southern portion of the Midwest and into Texas.