Given Enough Time, Everyone’s Survival Hits Zero

On August 6, 2009, in Health: news, information, nutrition, supplements, human health, info, options, by JB

What are the odds of you staying alive next year? In the next eight years? Let’s look at the numbers from meticulous Brit Benjamin Gompertz, who first had the genius observation that people actually die:

This startling fact was first noticed by the British actuary Benjamin Gompertz in 1825 and is now called the “Gompertz Law of human mortality.”  Your probability of dying during a given year doubles every 8 years.  For me, a 25-year-old American, the probability of dying during the next year is a fairly miniscule 0.03% — about 1 in 3,000.  When I’m 33 it will be about 1 in 1,500, when I’m 42 it will be about 1 in 750, and so on.  By the time I reach age 100 (and I do plan on it) the probability of living to 101 will only be about 50%.  This is seriously fast growth — my mortality rate is increasing exponentially with age.

And if my mortality rate (the probability of dying during the next year, or during the next second, however you want to phrase it) is rising exponentially, that means that the probability of me surviving to a particular age is falling super-exponentially.

[the guys who are way beyond Gompertz Law, but totally fun]

link: “Your body wasn’t built to last: a lesson from human mortality rates


1 Response » to “Given Enough Time, Everyone’s Survival Hits Zero”

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