Why Do Jews Tend to Live Longer Than Members of Other Religious Groups?

In the United States, life expectancy at age 55 (average number of additional years lived beyond 55) for Jews is 27.7. This is two to seven years longer than any other large religious group in the United States. Three possible explanations for this advantage are: favorable socio-demographic composition, better health behaviors, and relatively frequent attendance at religious services.

Most of the life expectancy advantage for Jews can be explained by favorable socio-demographic composition relative to other religious groups. Jews, on average, have higher levels of education and higher levels of wealth than members of other religious groups do. They also are less likely to be current smokers than those in other religions, so health behaviors explain some of the advantage. Conversely, attendance at religious services, a well-known protector against mortality, is unusually low for Jews. Thus, the life expectancy advantage is mostly attributable to education and wealth, somewhat to health behaviors, and not at all due to attendance at religious services.

Allison Sullivan is a doctoral candidate in demography at the University of Pennsylvania.

Category: Q&A


29 Responses

  1. Teshia says:

    I don’t believe this is researched in depth. The Jewish diet is biblical and definitely has a strict concept and effect on their anatomical well-being. Dairy not being consumed with meat. Kosher food products and daily habitual rules on food consumption and timing are factors that should be deeply considered. Cancer rates compared to foods that are considered cancer fighting and overall Jewish consumption of this food is a nice start, being that there are also less jews that are diagnosed with cancer.

  2. Karl says:

    Why do Jews live longer than other religions? It’s because they don’t do any manual labour work. They are in the entertainment industry where it requires little to no work and they get rewarded for it. Where as other religions work their hands to the bone and get little to no reward and die, much, much sooner because of the back breaking labour, that they produce for the Jews mind you… That’s why Jews live longer!

  3. robert says:

    good going Karl! Looks like you’re probably one of the college educated ones (not).

  4. Brett says:

    This article and the comments are testament to the utter codswallop that is being propagated on the Internet. Jews may indeed live longer owing to several factors, not least of which are their dietary habits. The assumption that Jews don’t attend religious services is bizarre (as being Jewish is largely about being active in the Jewish community, organizations, synagogues and so forth) and unfounded. As for the comments about Jews not getting their hands dirty, that’s simply false.

  5. Mel Sherwood says:

    Jews live longer because they do not drink very much, smoke even less, and BECAUSE THEY ARE GENETICALLY PREDISPOSED TO LIVE LONGER. Gevalt!
    Furthermore, KARL, my family were farmers in Romania and they got their hands really dirty.

  6. Ann says:

    Just when I think all is well, someone like Karl posts a turd. Do people like him still exist? I guess so… It is probably a combination of genetics, diet and lifestyle. Don’t fear it emulate it. Just be healthier.

  7. Sam Golub says:

    It is all based on diet!Jews live longer and have less disease because for generations they observed their dietery laws. Which are the waiting period between eating meat and dairy, usually 6 hours after consuming meat products. Conversly, their is a 2 hour wait for partaking of meat after eating dairy.

    PS I agree-Karl needs to get better informed and it is ashame there are still minds like his out there

  8. Karl says:

    Oh okay, everyone I’m sorry. Sorry that you (apart from Mel who is a Jew and who lies) have all been lied and manipulated by the Jews. Not only are they in the entrtainment industry but they also live longer because they control the banks, the media… basically everything that doesn’t require manual labour. And yes there are still people out there like me, they know and agree with me too it’s just that they don’t have the guts to say it!
    Oh and by the way I am college educated. I’m anti-sexist, anti-racist and anti-homophobic. It just happens that I happen to be anti-semitic too, becuase I have woken up. So before you judge me… Wake up and realise that Jews are lying and manipulating you every single day!

  9. Brad says:

    your anti-racist and anti-semitic? that makes about as much sense as being manipulated by the jews. What does make sense is there is alot of hatred for jews and christians alike. It stems from the jealous bone of Ismael in the old testament. When man doesnt follow Gods instructions it leads to folly. Of course the arabs will have to get in line with many others who share this hatred. Bitter persecution ooozes from ppl like Karl.

  10. Karl says:

    I thought Jews were not a race… Brad!

  11. Karl says:

    Obviously YOU’RE not college educated, Brad!

  12. roger smith says:

    Jews live longer due to larger noses. More air to the lungs helps promote healthy organs.

  13. Paula says:

    Interesting…I think its a the food! Not so much the nose. Survival of the fittest not, survival of the chosen–God rewards faithfulness. Karl, you’re in my prayers!

  14. Karl says:

    Oh G_D, thank-you. (I think)

  15. Abdallah says:

    Long live the Jews! They are the luminaries of this world.

  16. Karl says:

    More like the LUNIES of this world! (See what I did there) 😉

  17. Danny says:

    What is education? It’s just a suppressor teaching you things that are not
    Essential in everyday life they edge you towards a certain perspective your all human chattle lol salves

  18. Dr R.MacLeod says:

    I have been a family physician for 46 years and my previous partner was a family physician for 57 years. We had / have many Jewish patients, and I always noted that they lived a long life- many into their 90’s.I always asked why.I think the reasons are : 1.Jewish children are treasured,love dominates their lives.2. The sense of family is basic to Jewish life.3. Jewish people prize learning,thus they are well educated and more fulfilled- this group of people live longer no matter which religion.4. They drink little alcohol ,an excess of which kills at a young age.5. They are very health conscious: if there is a problem they face up to it so that it can be resolved. They do not ignore potential problems health wise.6. Jewish people are better off, and this group live longer.I am writing my book about this as between my former partner and myself we have over 100 years of listening and hopefully learning.It is called love is the best medicine.Dr Roderick MacLeod

  19. Dion says:

    Dr R Mcleod can you please email me once your book is out i would like to buy it. I too am interested in why jewish people have longer lifespans compared to other people groups whats more interesting is the inborn diseases they have which actually have a reducing affect on lifespan and yet they still live longer. I assume that no alcohol and no smoking play a big part (if this is correct that you guys pretty much never drink and smoke?) and maybe the kosher diet has something to do with it not that i know all that is involved in that.

  20. TonyTheJew says:

    According to Talmudic teachings,.G-d “compensates” people for the time spent praying, by eventually adding to their longevity.
    Yes,other nations pray as well, but an occasional idol worship doesn’t count.
    Here is a simple math:
    An average Jew prays at least on Shabbat (Sat) service which lasts for about 3 hours X 52 weeks X 75 years = 11,250 hours or 625 days(at 16 hours per day not counting sleep)= roughly 2 years.
    An Orthodox Jew prays 3 times a day for about 1.5 hours + Shabbat services = roughly 13 hours per week X 52 weeks X 75 years = 52,650 hours or 2,925 weeks or 8 years.
    Could this account for the discrepancy of 2-7 years referred to by the article?
    By the way, yes, our half brothers, the Muslims, pray extensively as well but their lives may be shortened for the “sinat chinam” or baseless hatred they often project onto others. May G-d reward them with long lives. Amen!

  21. TonyTheJew says:

    O! I almost forgot !
    Thank you Karl!
    Antisemites like you do wanders uniting us ,the Jews, and reminding us as to our real belonging.

  22. Perry says:

    As an octogenerian Jew, I find this discussion somewhat disappointing. First, name calling or similar ad hominem
    tactics is not rational argument. My immigrant grandfathers performed manual labor and lived long lives. I have had a university education and benefitted
    as a result.

    The principal thesis is flawed. Without more facts about causes of death, no meaningful conclusions
    can be drawn. Alcohol related illness is rare among
    Jews. The culture does not prohibit drinking. Wine is
    part of the religion. But, it is responsible drinking.The Passover seder limits drinking to four cups of wine.

    Another contribting cause of death may be sexually tranmitted diseases. Some years ago, I read that
    among African tribes, the incidence of AIDs was lower
    in tribes that practiced circumcision.

    Darwinism also may play a role. I recall reading, many years ago, that the incidence of tuberculosis
    among Jews was notably lower than among Blacks or
    persons of Irish decent. Jews have been living in cities for millenniums, while the African or Irish
    ancestors were rural. Living under crowded conditions
    could winnow those persons most susceptable to infectious diseases, while the more resistant persons
    would survive and reproduce.

    Lastly, our society seems to overvalue a college
    education. What one has learned is tested by a final
    esamination. But how much of that knowledge is retained six months, or six years, or sixty years

  23. Abraham Silvermen says:

    Don’t forget to account for the saying…Those who complain, live longer lives.

  24. jack goldman says:

    If Jews live longer or have more money it’s a blessing from God and a religion. If whites live longer and have more money it’s evil Satanic racism and requires affirmative action ethnic cleansing to right this historic wrong. Why the double standards about Jews and whites? I prefer to think of them as Hebrews, who aspire like whites to do well with one caveat, the global double standard. Why compare at all? Aren’t we all human beings on planet Earth? Hebrews are an ancient primitive tribe who believe in a flat Earth, Earth centered Universe and a Creator God who put the Earth there and this Creator God will return to save them as the messiah. This idea came from Egyptians. Time to move on from name calling and get us all to live better and longer. Long life to all.

  25. jerry says:

    has to do with the God given diet and prayer

  26. Marlon stern says:

    Jews have been through a lot. Much more than the holocaust. A group that is so tested will weed out the weak. Survival of the fittest. Huey Newton, a black revolutionary, said he didn’t know any group of people besides black people and possibly the Jews that have been through so much that they would develop survival advantages. I frequently read about the 110 year old black granny and I personally, on the ethnic Jewish (ashkenazi) side of my family, I have many relatives that made it past 90. My father is 93, his mom made it to 97. He has a living aunt who is 109.

  27. Dude says:

    Come on, get your act together. Why are you talking about “genetic predisposition” if the jews are SUPPOSEDLY not a race. You guys are admitting that you are in fact a race…

  28. Karl says:

    Well said Dude, er Dude. Thank-you. :)

  29. Karl says:

    jack goldman, jews think they are better than everyone else!!! That’s why i write this. They think they’re better than Hindus, Muslims YES I SAID IT! Greek Orthodox (founding fathers of democracy I might add! which you Jews have manipulated.) Eg anyone who says something against the Jews is instanly called an anti-Semite. Basically they think they’re better than everyone!

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