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How long do you expect to live? To be 100? 90? 80? About six years ago the U.S. Census Bureau predicted that, by now, we’d have about 114,000 people over the age of 100 in the United States. But it didn’t turn out that way.
Looks like our lives may be a good deal shorter than many of us have believed. Instead of 114,000 centenarians living in the U.S. today, we only have about 53,000. That’s only half as many as were predicted.
A University of Chicago study based on the Social Security Administration Death Master File shows that after you reach the age of 80, you won’t live as long as experts have expected. While in the past, it has been presumed that 80 year olds have a decent chance of making it to 100, researchers have discovered that their longevity is in just as much peril as any other age group.
The longevity of all age groups, according to this research follows what’s called the the Gompertz Law, formulated by Benjamin Gompertz in 1825: Your chances of dying in a given year doubles every eight years of age. This rule has proved true around the world.
So even though it has long been believed that for those older than 80 the Gompertz Law did not apply, this research shows that it does.
So our future population will turn out to be a lot less gray than predicted.