Living longer isn’t everything

September 26th, 2012 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

Stuff reports:

In the industrialised world, women live at least five years longer, on average, than men.

Scientists have attributed that difference to everything from healthier habits to hardier cells.

Now, a new study that analyses the longevity of eunuchs, or castrated men, suggests that testosterone may play a part in shortening men’s lives.

The idea that testosterone, the male sex hormone, affects lifespan isn’t new.

Neutered dogs and other animals that have had their sources of testosterone removed often live longer than their intact counterparts.

For me, I go for quality of life over quantity!

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42 Responses to “Living longer isn’t everything”

  1. RRM (9,630 comments) says:

    As the great Billy Connolly once observed: If you live healthily and do everything right, then sure, you may live five years longer.

    But it’s not five more years of being 25 or 30. It’s 5 more years at the end, when you’re shitting into a bag in the rest home.
    Is this really what you want?

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  2. Griff (6,987 comments) says:

    May you live a long and uneventful life ancient Chinese curse

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  3. alwyn (399 comments) says:

    I have always liked John Mortimer’s opinion on the matter.
    John, author of the “Rumpole of the Bailey” works opined that
    “There is no pleasure worth forgoing just for an extra three years in the geriatric ward”.
    Clearly he and Billy Connolly had similar views

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  4. Pete George (23,257 comments) says:

    Ah, but maybe it’s not three years more in the geriatric ward, maybe it’s the same length of time but three years earlier.

    But I doubt I’ll get castrated when I’m 80 in case it gives me a few more years. Most of the male orientated risks are probably much earlier than that anyway.

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  5. radvad (692 comments) says:

    Not only is this further proof that we need a Ministry of Mens Affairs but it also justifies a salary gap based on gender as we men have 5 years less earning power.

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  6. annie (540 comments) says:

    I agree with Pete – quality of life has to include looking out for your health to at least a moderate degree – try to keep your BMI under ‘grossly overweight’, watch the sugar intake, avoid eating way too much fat, don’t flush too many brain cells along with the alcohol metabolites the morning after. You don’t have to be extreme and turn into a skinned-rabbit cyclist nibbling snacks from the organic shop, just moderate.

    What you’re aiming for is a long life, or at least one healthy enough to enjoy it, right till the end. The end result of lack of moderation will be a shorter life, but you don’t skid into the grave sideways, you are more likely to linger uncomfortably for years before the end, and do so at a younger age than otherwise.

    End of sermon, apologies, but it’s true.

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  7. Manolo (13,514 comments) says:

    Now, a new study that analyses the longevity of eunuchs, or castrated men, suggests that testosterone may play a part in shortening men’s lives.

    Far out. Some NZ politicians will live very, very long.

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  8. Yoza (1,662 comments) says:

    My two cents worth are that testicles cause the heart to beat more rapidly more often, “the candle that burns twice as bright burns half as long” so to speak.

    The sped up metabolism also causes steers and eunuchs to carry more weight as the slower beating heart burns off less energy. Similarly, when I gave up smoking I put on weight as my heart didn’t need to beat as fast to pump the same amount of oxygen around my body. I’m guessing the microscopic tadpoles are big consumers of oxygen.

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  9. nasska (10,865 comments) says:

    Manolo

    ….”Some NZ politicians will live very, very long.”……

    True but the corollary is that many left wing female politicians, as evidenced by their impressive mustaches, may be destined for early graves.

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  10. Chthoniid (2,029 comments) says:

    Channeling the very wise Dr Dick Solomon, I’ll just comment on the marginal gain in life-span with ‘those years are the crappy years anyway’

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  11. Manolo (13,514 comments) says:

    … the corollary is that many left wing female politicians, as evidenced by their impressive mustaches, may be destined for early graves.

    And that can only be cause for celebration. :D

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  12. Pete George (23,257 comments) says:

    “the candle that burns twice as bright burns half as long”

    Maybe, sort of, but it may not be the testicles that are the biggest problem.

    My brother-in-law has just been moved from hospital to hospice. He’s neyond being on his last legs, one leg was amputated five years ago, his second leg was amputated recently. He’s been crook as for yonks.

    I’m not sure it was his testicles that caused him to burn more than his share of tobacco, and drink more than his share of alcohol. But whatever, his ‘quality of life’ has been nothing to be envious of, and neither will his quantity.

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  13. kowtow (7,895 comments) says:

    Delighted I’m not related (in more ways than one) to PG.

    Plastering relatives mediacl histories on the internet!

    Hey,why don’t he apply for a job at ACC?

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  14. gump (1,541 comments) says:

    Getting castrated doesn’t make you live longer, it just feels like it.

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  15. kowtow (7,895 comments) says:

    gump,something you’d like to share with us?

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  16. Manolo (13,514 comments) says:

    Hey,why don’t he apply for a job at ACC?
    He’s the boss of the Dunedin office.

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  17. annie (540 comments) says:

    Chthoniid (1,825) Says:
    September 26th, 2012 at 10:25 am

    Channeling the very wise Dr Dick Solomon, I’ll just comment on the marginal gain in life-span with ‘those years are the crappy years anyway’

    Much as I have to respect the opinion of anyone who calls themselves Cthoniid, I must disagree.

    The worse the lifestyle, the crappier the final years, in general. Pete’s example is a pretty typical one and still a tragedy that is an all too commonly seen result of a crappy lifestyle.

    I’m not advocating fanaticism here, just moderation in all things. It’s not that hard, even I can manage it more or less.

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  18. annie (540 comments) says:

    Should have said – moderation in all things, except smoking. Lose that altogether.

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  19. hmmokrightitis (1,566 comments) says:

    Smokers are morons, plain and simple. Live life to the fullest, youre a long time dead, as the saying goes. Animals are delicious for a reason, as is the demon drink. Keep fit and sexually active, works a treat :)

    But my personal favourite comes from my 12 year old, earlier this week: “Give everything 100% Dad, except when youre donating blood”

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  20. Pete George (23,257 comments) says:

    kowotow, Manolo – nothing accidental about that case, and incidentally no one will know who I’m talking about. And if they did it wouldn’t matter to the person who happens to be currently bleeding and starving to death, hopefully unconscious and unaware most of the time. But it’s difficult to tell.

    Anyway what’s the problem with talking about real life cases? Life can be a bitch, especially when you abuse yourself. No point in trying to be secretive about it.

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  21. Lucia Maria (2,239 comments) says:

    Getting married (to a woman) lowers a man’s testosterone and apparently married men live longer.

    :P

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  22. kowtow (7,895 comments) says:

    Smokers are morons? Tell that to one of the greatest men to ever live. Winston Churchill who died aged 90.

    http://www.google.co.nz/imgres?q=winston+churchill+tommy+gun&num=10&hl=en&biw=1366&bih=622&tbm=isch&tbnid=8_1qkuNayv-xyM:&imgrefurl=http://www.iwmshop.org.uk/product/12811/Tommy_Gun_Poster&docid=RXfsV_nXW7QKQM&imgurl=http://www.iwmshop.org.uk/images/prod_12811.jpg&w=600&h=600&ei=oT9iUNOhMImRiQf1-YDABA&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=502&sig=109666606469141413795&page=1&tbnh=133&tbnw=133&start=0&ndsp=26&ved=1t:429,r:9,s:0,i:98&tx=71&ty=61

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  23. nasska (10,865 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria

    It just seems longer.

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  24. insider (1,028 comments) says:

    Shouldn’t we have had a report from some commission on this gross societal inequality by now along with recommendations for a range of law changes to protect ourselves from ourselves?

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  25. Harriet (4,614 comments) says:

    “……The worse the lifestyle, the crappier the final years, in general. Pete’s example is a pretty typical one and still a tragedy that is an all too commonly seen result of a crappy lifestyle….”

    What rubbish.

    Just look at people like Rod Stewart, Mick Jagger and Keith Richards – and what they’re fucking! They had very hard lives.

    Nuts or no nuts – women like that arn’t ‘crappy’ at any age – especially if you are in your 60′s like those boys. :cool:

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  26. hmmokrightitis (1,566 comments) says:

    kowtow, my grandfather lived until he was 92, started smoking rollies at 12. Smoked the damned things all his life. He was truly an exception. If you want to smoke, knock yourself out. I know my evil habits will not kill me as quickly – and statistically as perfectly – as smoking will. Notwithstanding statistical outliers like my grandad. But you take your chances compadre :)

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  27. Spam (595 comments) says:

    You tag this as “Castration” and file it under “Fun Things”????

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  28. Viking2 (11,242 comments) says:

    Lucia Maria (1,195) Says:
    September 26th, 2012 at 11:36 am

    Getting married (to a woman) lowers a man’s testosterone and apparently married men live longer.

    :P
    Um reputedly homosexual men are more promiscuous so therefore their testosterone level must be affected as well. So perhaps they will live long enough to look after the God Bother’s , after us real men have moved on.

    :lol: :lol:

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  29. kowtow (7,895 comments) says:

    Look here’s another statesman who never had a ciggie out of his mouth, lived to 92 and had a pretty hard life.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/5899682/Deng-Xiaoping.html

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  30. Pete George (23,257 comments) says:

    Harriet – selecting a few old rock fossils doesn’t prove anything.

    What is the life expectancy of a rock start overall? The averages mightn’t look so jumping jack flash. Neither do the jumping jacks for that matter.

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  31. Colville (2,165 comments) says:

    We know why married men die earlier than married women?
    Because they want to.

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  32. Lucia Maria (2,239 comments) says:

    Viking,

    I doubt promiscuity has anything to do with lowering testerone – it’s probably more to do with being looked after and not having to go out “hunting” anymore.

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  33. RRM (9,630 comments) says:

    It’s surprising just how much the desire to (hold / look at / talk to) your baby son overshadows the desire to have sex with your wife, also… ;-)

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  34. Colville (2,165 comments) says:

    Harriet & PG
    Rock stars death ages…Jones, Hendrix , Joplin, Cobain..the 27 club….
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/27_Club

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  35. Harriet (4,614 comments) says:

    PG#

    It’s mostly to do with one’s genes.

    Everything else[within reason] doesn’t really come into it. Those with a family history of living longer WILL PROBABLY live longer.

    Getting castrated so that you can spend 5 more years with your wife – is probably NOT – in your wife’s plan. :cool:

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  36. Bob (494 comments) says:

    I have my own pet theory as to why women live longer than men. They have babies. Their bodies are fitter and stronger than men’s to cope with birth. That allows them to survive longer.

    As I am getting on in years myself and know other older men I can tell you few want to become a vegetable in a rest home. Most prefer to drop dead when they are physically incapable. None want to be mentally incapable. Quality of life does count.

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  37. hinamanu (2,352 comments) says:

    Well, Mr Farrar is pro GE foods and says they are safe….O really

    Shocking French Study Shows GM Foods May Shorten Lifespan!

    Mike welcomes NaturalSociety.com editor and Infowars.com contributing writer Anthony Gucciardi to discuss the results of the recent French GMO study.

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  38. chiz (1,131 comments) says:

    Shocking French Study Shows GM Foods May Shorten Lifespan!

    Dodgy french study proved what its backers wanted. More corrupt pseudoscience from the anti-GE crowd.

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  39. kowtow (7,895 comments) says:

    I believe that in the next decade or so there will be a reversal in the female live longer trend.

    Why?

    Look around ,so many women are fat. There’s an epidemic of female dot coms waddling around,they’re everywhere.Got to give somewhere along the line.

    I get the impression that blokes are staying fitter and women fatter.

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  40. KH (693 comments) says:

    So I have a reduced life expectancy/heath status.
    That is everybody else’s problem then.
    Clearly this also means I own the water.

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  41. Steve (North Shore) (4,518 comments) says:

    Well if women live longer than men maybe they should work longer than men before retiring and collecting superanuation?
    Men retire at 67, and women 72. Sounds fair to me.

    What’s that noise I hear? the feminists rustling about rights? The only way women can have the same rights as men would be to give up a few :)

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  42. MH (682 comments) says:

    Have you ever noticed that most Retirement Villages are located off cul-de-sacs.

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