The Dutch are Living Longer – But Only if They’re Educated

New figures from Statistics Netherlands show that those living in the land of the tall people are starting to stretch their lifespans too. But (and this is a big but) only if they are educated. Those living in the lowlands that didn’t go to university can expect a shorter lifespan to their higher-educated counterparts. Sorry, we don’t make the rules ?‍♀️

Statistics Netherlands drew the conclusion after comparing the life expectancy of Dutch people in the past four years with the prior 2011-2015 period.

The agency found that the lifespan of those without a university education has remained stagnant over recent years, while those that spent some years studying increased.

The girls have it

We have good news for our female sisters who typically live longer than men regardless of education (girl power!). According to the study, educated females will live about four years longer than their less-educated female counterparts. Highly educated women who are currently 65 years old still have an average of almost 25 years to live. Lower educated women of 65 have ‘only’ 20 years left to live.

For the men, those currently aged 65 that are highly educated can expect to keep banging on for another 22 years, but males with less education will only go for another 17.

Both males and females have added about one year to the gap between lower and higher educated on previous studies.

Why such a difference?

Statistics Netherlands said they did not study the reasons for the difference in lifespans, but said it could be due to lifestyle factors.

“We do know that a number of factors play a role in life expectancy, especially the way people live. A healthy lifestyle can determine life expectancy,” said a spokesperson to RTL Nieuws.

“People with a higher educational level lead a healthier lifestyle than those with a lower educational level. When you think of things like smoking and being overweight, we see that more often among lower educated people.”

What do you think of the reasoning for the gap in lifespans? Let us know in the comments below!

Feature Image: Matthias Zomer on Pexels.

Samantha Dixon 🇦🇺
Samantha Dixon 🇦🇺
Sam has over six years experience writing about life in the Netherlands and leads the content team at DutchReview. She originally came to the Netherlands to study in 2016 and now holds a BA (Hons.) in Arts, a BA (Hons) in Journalism, and (almost) a Masters in Teaching. She loves to write about settling into life in the Netherlands, her city of Utrecht, learning Dutch, and jobs in the Netherlands — and she still can’t jump on the back of a moving bike (she's learning!).


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