Paradox or Paradoxes? An Overview of the Male-Female Health Paradox Across Different Dimensions of Health in European Countries

Vanessa Gabrielle di Lego Goncalves , Vienna Institute of Demography
Marc Luy, Vienna Institute of Demography

It has been widely documented that women live longer than men at all ages, but spend a higher proportion of their total life expectancy in poorer health. There has been considerable effort from researchers in the field of mortality and health to explain this phenomenon, coined in the literature as the “male-female health-survival paradox”, but to date no single answer has been found and the results are yet inconclusive. The aim of this paper is to highlight contrasting scenarios of this paradox, in order to provide an overall picture using different health dimension indicators based on the global survey questions forming the Minimum European Health Module (MEHM/SILC) in all countries of the European Union between 2004 and 2016. With this broad overview we expect to assess the magnitude sensitivity of the paradox to particular health dimensions and its implications when analyzing the gender gap in health and mortality.

See paper

 Presented in Session 11. Health & Mortality 2