The life expectancy rate of Caucasian women has significantly decreased, with many passing away even before their 50th birthday.
An analysis of national health mortality statistics, conducted by The Washington Post, has revealed that for African Americans, Hispanics and older white Americans, the average age has increased. But middle-aged white women are dying at a higher rate. White American women always lived longer than men and even people of other races, but now the health advantage has decreased significantly.
Statistics studied by The Post revealed that since 2000 there has been a downfall in the health of white women, especially for those in rural areas.
Interestingly, most deaths have been associated with poor health and it has been found that a large number of women have been taking drugs or been involved in opioid abuse. Heavy drinking is also another major reason responsible for these deaths, and that can be particularly deadly in obese women.
Moreover, cancer accounts for a large number of these deaths, with many of them a result of excessive smoking.
Researchers also cited something that can silently kill you over time: stress, and the awful way it affects health.
Additionally, the life for white women today has significantly changed from decades past. Most are full-time employees and homemakers at the same time, which makes their lives extremely stressful. With the shift in duties and added responsibilities, some women consequentially resort to drinking, smoking and even in many cases self-harm, which causes the health problems and death.
“The stressors have increased,” said Janine Clayton, director of the Office of Research on Women’s Health at the National Institutes of Health. “If it’s affecting women who previously had better health, how might it even more deleteriously affect women who previously had borderline health?”
Andrew Cherlin, a sociologist at John Hopkins University, stated that “dashed expectations” is another cause for the rising mortality among young white females. He claims that these women tend to be more pessimistic about their future, which has a significant impact on their quality of life, thus resulting in earlier deaths.
“The idea that today’s generations will do better than their parents’ generation is part of the American Dream. It has always been true until now,” he said. “It may still be true for college-educated Americans, but not for the high school educated people we used to call the working class.”
Middle-aged white women typically aren't the focus of many health studies or a cause of concern for social ills. But these statistics are undeniable: If middle aged white Americans don't start taking care of themselves, more will head to an early grave.