ROSTOCK, Germany, May 13 (UPI) — Older women with younger husbands have a shorter life expectancy while older men who marry younger women tend to live longer, a German researcher said.
Having a partner seven years younger increases a woman’s chances of dying earlier by 20 percent, said Sven Drefahl, a sociologist at the Max Planck Institute for Demographic Research in Rostock, Germany.
“The greater the age difference, the lower the wife’s life expectancy,” Drefahl said. “The best choice for a woman is to marry a man of exactly the same age.”
As for men, the mortality risk of a man seven to nine years older than his wife was reduced by 11 percent when compared with couples the same age, The Daily Telegraph reported Thursday.
So-called Cougars — women who date or marry younger men — may experience more stress and reduced health because they are “violating social norms and thus suffer from social sanctions,” said Drefahl, who based his results on a study of 2 million Danish couples.
Copyright 2010 United Press International, Inc. (UPI). Any reproduction, republication, redistribution and/or modification of any UPI content is expressly prohibited without UPI’s prior written consent.