Living to 100: 80% are Women, Report Shows

11:28 AM, Dec 10, 2012   |    comments
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Janice Lloyd, USA TODAY

Bad news, guys. The chances of making it to 100 are much greater if you're a woman.

The 2010 Census found 80% of the 53,364 people age 100 and older are women, according to a report out today. For every 100 centenarian women, only 20.7% were men. The overall number of centenarians has increased 5.8% since 2000.

What helps the women? The largest study of centenarians in this country, the New England Centenarian Study, suggests that women handle age-related diseases better than men. But among men who do survive to 100, they seem better able to function than the women. The Census report finds the men were more likely to be living with others in a household (43.5%) while women are more likely to be living in a nursing home (35.2%).

The Census report also finds:

The population 100 and older made up a small proportion of the total U.S. population, representing less than 2 per 10,000 people.

More than half (62.5%) of centenarians were age 100 or 101. About 92% are ages 100 to 104.

Those who make it to become supercentenarians (ages 110 and older) make up 0.6% of the centenarian population.

The report also shows that centenarians were less diverse than the rest of the population. Compared with 72.4% white in the total population, 82.5% of the centenarians are white. Nearly 6% (5.8%) are Hispanic compared to the 16.3 % of Hispanics who make up the total population.

Most centenarians lived in the South (17,444), followed by the Midwest (13,112), Northeast (12,244) and West (10,564). California has the highest number (5,921), followed by Florida, New York and Texas.

An earlier Census report shows men are starting to make gains: The largest growth rate for a 10-year age group within the older population was for men 85 to 94 years old (46.5%). Women in this age group also made gains but to a smaller degree (22.9%).

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