While centenarians make up a small share of the world’s older population, their proportion is growing. In 1990 there were 2.9 centenarians for every 10,000 adults ages 65 and older around the world. That share grew to 7.4 by 2015 and is projected to rise by 23.6 by 2050. ~ Pew Research
Japan and Italy, what’s your secret?
All you can eat sushi and pasta? (“Please God…”)
On a serious note, the Japanese and Italians dust the rest of the world in the proportionate number of persons aged 100 and older.
Japan has the top spot at 4.8 per 10,000 people, followed by Italy at 4.1 per 10,000.
The U.S. ranks third at 2.2. China (0.3) and India (0.2) round out the top five.
What’s truly incredible is that these numbers are expected to rise as much as ten-fold over the next 35 years, according to the United Nations’ “World Population Prospects, 2017” report.
Genetics and Lifestyle
Okay, so there may come a time (in the not so distant future, perhaps) when we can alter our genes at-will.
That said, genes play a role in how long you’ll live. People who’ve reached a hundred are more likely than the rest of the population to have ancestors who lived for a long time.
Increasingly, however, lifestyle factors – in conjunction with scientific and medical advances – are playing a more prominent role in living a longer life.