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How we fall apart: Similarities of human aging in 10 European countries

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  • Abeliansky, Ana Lucia
  • Strulik, Holger

Abstract

We analyze human aging, understood as health deficit accumulation, for a panel of European individuals. For that purpose, we use four waves of the Survey of Health, Aging and Retirement in Europe (SHARE dataset) and construct a health deficit index. Results from log-linear regressions suggest that, on average, elderly European men and women develop about 2.5 percent more health deficits from one birthday to the next. In non-linear regression (akin to the Gompertz-Makeham model), however, we find much greater rates of aging and large differences between men and women as well as between countries. Interestingly, these differences follow a particular regularity (akin to the compensation effect of mortality). They suggest an age at which average health deficits converge for men and women and across countries.

Suggested Citation

  • Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2017. "How we fall apart: Similarities of human aging in 10 European countries," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 301, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
  • Handle: RePEc:zbw:cegedp:301
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    Cited by:

    1. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2018. "How season of birth affects health and aging," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 352, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    2. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2018. "Hungry children age faster," Economics & Human Biology, Elsevier, vol. 29(C), pages 211-220.
    3. Strulik, Holger, 2019. "An economic theory of depression and its impact on health behavior and longevity," Journal of Economic Behavior & Organization, Elsevier, vol. 158(C), pages 269-287.
    4. Carl-Johan Dalgaard & Casper Worm Hansen & Holger Strulik, 2017. "Accounting for Fetal Origins: Health Capital vs. Health Deficits," Discussion Papers 17-11, University of Copenhagen. Department of Economics.
    5. Dalgaard, Carl-Johan & Hansen, Casper Worm & Strulik, Holger, 2018. "Physiological Aging around the World and Economic Growth," CAGE Online Working Paper Series 375, Competitive Advantage in the Global Economy (CAGE).
    6. Strulik, Holger & Werner, Katharina, 2019. "Time-inconsistent health behavior and its impact on aging and longevity," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 381, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    7. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Erel, Devin & Strulik, Holger, 2019. "Aging in the USA: Similarities and disparities across time and space," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 384, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.
    8. Abeliansky, Ana Lucia & Strulik, Holger, 2018. "Long-run improvements in human health: Steady but unequal," Center for European, Governance and Economic Development Research Discussion Papers 355, University of Goettingen, Department of Economics.

    More about this item

    Keywords

    health; aging; health deficit index; Europe; gender differences; compensation law; human life span;

    JEL classification:

    • I10 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - General
    • I19 - Health, Education, and Welfare - - Health - - - Other

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