Article on: Average Life Expectancy for UK

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‘Average Age of Death UK’ & UK Life Expectancy Map

Life Expectancy Calculator UK Postcode Areas
Life Expectancy Calculator UK Postcode Areas


UK Life Insurance Quote Average Life Expectancy United Kingdom

In this article, we will look at the “average life expectancy in Uk” versus other Countries around the World plus how it may affect Life Insurance rates.

It maybe nice ‘sometimes’ to have a Crystal ball to tell us our futures, but the real truth is that none of us know for certain. Unlike astrologer Nostradamus, or Mystic Meg horoscopes, most people cannot predict the future.

Looking at our past history however, and we can see how lucky we are to be able to live a longer life, within UK modern times.

See below how the average life expectancy has risen in the UK over the decades.

When calculating your uk average life expectancy today, then it is a case of lies, damn lies and statistics. Various Govt calculation tools available, may not currently take account of several key factors (including unexpected Pandemics) and which we will examine here further.

'average life expectancy in england'What’s Average ‘Life Expectancy in England’?

Life expectancy in England has had 2 major turning point trends in the past decade for ‘average life expectancy in england’.

From 2011, increases in english life expectancy slowed up after numerous decades of steady improvement, prompting then much social media debate about the likely causes.

Then in 2020, the Covid 19 pandemic was an even more significant & life changing turning point. It prompted a sharp fall in average life expectancy for England & the enormous magnitude of which people had not seen since the 2nd World War.

The UK news at that time was sadly full of both care homes & hospitals losing their cared for patients & families their loved ones.

In 2019, prior to this England life expectancy had increased upto 79.9 years for english males and 83.6 years for english females.  

However, the 2020’s pandemic caused average England life expectancy 2022 to fall by around 1 year for both males and females, against the levels of a decade ago.

Currently, various provisional Government data suggests there will be little change in 2024 for data on ‘life expectancy in England’.

UK Life Span | Best & Worst Places?

If you used a uk life expectancy calculator or instead tried to calculate uk life expectancy by year of birth, then it does not ask where are the best or worst places for you to live in the UK ie; a UK Life Expectancy Map.

The best Uk areas for Human Lifespan in a Statista Uk Survey are both in the London area. Kensington & Chelsea borough for males age 83 and Hart for females age 86.

Worst Uk areas for average uk life expectancy 2020 are both in Scotland. North Lanarkshire at 75 for males and the same area for females at 79.

This variation for England life expectancy versus Scotland, N.Ireland or Wales, seems to indicate maybe wealth and lifestyle are factors, rather than maybe inner city air pollution, to Average Life Expectancy United Kingdom ?

Calculate the ‘Average Life Expectancy in the UK’

Use this simple free ONS uk life expectancy calculator* below to work out either the average age of death UK > Average life expectancy of Males in Uk or Average life expectancy Female Uk.

‘UK Life Expectancy Calculator’

* | data not stored

life expectancy united kingdom
* source thesaurus plus

Factors of Life Expectancy | UK Average Age of Death

Underwriting life insurance is subtly different for factors of life expectancy, than just calculating your longevity. Perhaps due to historic EU rules & modern GDPR legalities, meaning certain questions can’t now be asked?

If you use the above ‘uk life expectancy calculator’, naturally it only works out averages. As there are lots of other factors that go into the calculation, rather than factoring the most accurate life expectancy calculator uk.

Note: life expectancy average figures will naturally vary from country to country around the world. Check out these stats from around the world to see these life expectancy variations of over 30 years !

average life expectancy united kingdom v world

Country Life Expectancy

Top 10 Countries

These figures will continually vary re Pandemic 2020’s, but here is the current World League Table snapshot average by Country Life Expectancy age at death.

TOP 10 & Bottom 10 League Table | by Country Life Expectancy average.

  1. Japan – age 84
  2. Switzerland
  3. South Korea
  4. Singapore
  5. Cyprus
  6. Spain
  7. Australia
  8. Italy
  9. Israel
  10. Norway – age 82

Life Expectancy for United Kingdom | UK average age of death 81 | Currently Ranked No: 25* 2020 ‘s

Bottom 10 Countries

  1. Lesotho – age 50
  2. Central African Republic
  3. Somalia
  4. Eswatini
  5. Mozambique
  6. Kiribati
  7. Chad
  8. Guinea Bassau
  9. Zimbabwe
  10. Sierre Leone – age 60

What Country has Longest Life Expectancy?

So when reviewing what country has longest life expectancy, the Top 3 of 4 Countries are all from Asia ie; Japan, Singapore and South Korea. Switzerland was the lowest in Europe.

Japan is the top dog, in this international comparison of mortality statistics & among other G7 countries. Japan has the longest average life expectancy at 84. Studies say this is primarily is due to remarkably low mortality rates from ischemic heart disease and cancer (particularly breast and prostate). 

These low mortality rates are also thought to reflect the lower prevalence of obesity in Japan and their diet ie; lower intake of red meat & saturated fats. Also high intakes of fish, polyunsaturated fats, plant foods & green tea. In other words – You are what you Eat.

For current Covid 19 death rates, both Japan and Singapore had remarkably low fatalities (which scientists debate maybe genetic) compared to the UK. We will look at Covid 19 Pandemic in the next subject.

Most of the bottom countries are sadly in Africa. Does this mean that a lack of clean fresh water supply or a hot climate, are the main contributing factors ?

This does not appear to be totally the case, but is probably contributory. Lesotho’s high death rate research appears mainly linked to non-communicable diseases ie; smoking, alcohol, obesity leading to cancer, heart disease and diabetes.

life expectancy calculator
US Life Expectancy Calculator Tool

This free USA life expectancy calculator tool above, is an interesting alternative to the more simplistic ONS UK average age of death? It asks more lifestyle questions. (USA ranked 40th average age 78).

Health Risks & UK Life Expectancy

Health Risks | BMI and Life Expectancy Obese

Our waist lines in the UK are slowly expanding unhappy face

Recent Oxford University research found that moderate obesity, which is now common in the UK, reduces our life expectancy

Excess weight shortens human lifespan, by placing pressure on our organs. In countries like Britain and America, weighing a third more than the optimum, obesity maybe shortens lifespan by about 3 years.

Severe obesity, which is still uncommon in the UK but more common in the USA, can shorten a person’s life by upto 10 years. Their research found this 10 year loss, is equal to the effects of lifelong smoking. 

If a person has a BMI of 30 to 35, then they are classed moderately obese. If they have a BMI of 40 to 50, they are severely obese. Check our BMI KG calculator.

Though not perfect, BMI is a useful tool for assessing the extent to which fatty tissues may cause ill health ie; obesity risks leading to cancer, heart disease and diabetic problems.

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Life Expectancy Obese & Raised BMI

Health Risks | Life Expectancy Diabetes

Along with expanding waistlines, also comes a potential for diabetes. After a diabetic diagnosis, many type 2 and type 1 diabetics worry about their life expectancy. Maintaining good blood glucose control is a good way to prolonging average life expectancy.

Diabetes causes raised blood pressure & cholesterol, kidney & heart disease and diabetic retinopathy.

Life Expectancy for Diabetes Type 2

Type 2 diabetes may generally develops more slowly than type 1 diabetes.

Studies indicate the life expectancy of diabetes type 2 when diagnosed compared with a healthy person the same age, are as follows.

Whereas if you develop age related type 2 diabetes later into life, say into your 80’s, studies say you may not really lose major average life expectancy ie; no need for any ‘type 2 diabetes life expectancy calculator’.

Life Expectancy with Diabetes Type 1

Unlike type 2 diabetes, the exact cause of type 1 diabetes is unknown. People with type 1 diabetes have a life expectancy quoted as being reduced by over 20 years.

However, medical improvements in diabetes care in recent decades indicates that people with type 1 diabetes are potentially now living significantly longer.

A report noted that people with type 1 diabetes born after 1965 had a life expectancy uk average age of death @ 69 years old. 

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Health Risks | Life Expectancy Smoking?

Over 100,000 people in the UK on average die each year due to smoking. These stats are factored into the Average Life Expectancy in the UK

If you are a long-term smoker, on average, your average smoker life expectancy is about 10 years less than a non-smoker. This means maybe only about half of long-term smokers may live past 70. The younger you are when you start smoking, the more likely you are to smoke for longer and to sadly die early from smoking.

Smoking-related deaths are mainly due to cancers, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and heart disease.
About half of all smokers die from smoking-related diseases.

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Health Risks | Life Expectancy Cancer

Cancer is a harder subject to form life expectancy averages on, due to many different types of cancers.

However, according to the Cancer Research UK, Cancer survival rates are improving and has doubled in the last 40 years in the UK. We will look here at just 2 Cancers – Breast Cancer & Liver cancer

  • 50% of people diagnosed with cancer in UK may potentially survive their disease for 10 years or more
  • Cancer survival rates are higher in women than men

Health Risks | Life Expectancy Breast Cancer

Breast cancer is cancer that starts within the breast tissue. There are many types of breast cancer from invasive, lobular, inflamatory, ductal, angiosarcomas, triple negative or pagets are just some.

So the treatments you need will depend on the type you have, as well as your overall general health. Treatments include surgery, chemotherapy, hormone therapy, and radiotherapy.

  • Stage 1: the cancer is small and only in the breast tissue, or it might be found in lymph nodes close to the breast
  • Most women (around 98%) will survive their cancer for 5 years or more after diagnosis
  • Stage 2: the cancer is either in the breast or in the nearby lymph nodes or both. It is an early stage breast cancer
  • Around 90% will survive their cancer for 5 years or more after diagnosis
  • Stage 3: the cancer has spread from the breast to lymph nodes close to the breast or to the skin of the breast or to the chest wall
  • More than 70% will survive their cancer for 5 years or more after diagnosis
  • Stage 4: the cancer has spread to other parts of the body
  • Around 25% will survive their cancer for 5 years or more after they are diagnosed, but is not curable just treatable for some years
well women insurance cover
Well Women Insurance | Importance of Early Checks

Health Risks | Life Expectancy Liver Cancer

Your survival rate if diagnosed with primary liver cancer depends on how advanced it is at diagnosis. It also depends on many other factors, such as your individual condition, type of liver cancer, treatment and level of fitness. Because of this, no one can tell you exactly how long you’ll live.

But here are some averages from Cancer Research UK.

  • Stage 0 | Without treatment, the median survival is more than 3 years
  • With treatment, between 70 – 90% will survive for 5 years or more
  • Stage A | Without treatment, the median survival is 3 years
  • With treatment, between 50 – 70% will survive for 5 years or more
  • Stage B | Without treatment, the median survival is 16 months
  • With treatment, the median survival is 20 months
  • Stage C | Without treatment, the median survival is 4/8 months
  • With treatment, the median survival is 6/11 months
  • Stage D | No real treatments work longer term sadly so the median survival is less than 4 months

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Health Risks | Life Expectancy Alcohol

Drinkers who ignore alcohol consumption guidelines, could be drastically reducing their average life expectancy, researchers say.

This study found those regularly drinking excess alcohol every week, were at an increased risk of early death.

  • If you drink between 100-200g per week regularly (equivalent of 5 > 10 pints of beer or glasses of wine) life expectancy at age of 40 falls by approximately 6 months.
  • If you drink between 200-350g per week regularly (equivalent of 10 > 18 pints of beer or glasses of wine) life expectancy at age of 40 falls by 1-2 years.
  • If you drink more than 350g per week regularly (equivalent of 18+ pints of beer or glasses of wine) life expectancy at age of 40 falls by 4-5 years.

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The international study, published in the Lancet journal, found out drinking more alcohol also gave a greater risk of suffering a stroke, heart failure, and fatal aneurysm.

If you think you may have an alcohol problem – contact NHS via link for more guidance & information

Covid 19 Pandemic on ‘United Kingdom Life Expectancy’

The number of Uk Covid related deaths recorded so far in the early 2020’s was over 175,000. Pandemic registered deaths for those people aged 44 or younger, make up a very small percentage of the total re ‘life expectancy united kingdom’ stats.

Coronavirus Covid 19 impact on Average Human Life Span | Average life expectancy in uk

  • 2% of registered Covid 19 deaths were under age 44
  • under 30% were aged between 45 & late 70’s
  • 70% of registered deaths have been among those aged 75 or older

The mean uk average age of death, recorded so far due to Pandemic Covid 19 – is age 78 for males & 82 for females. This ‘united kingdom life expectancy’ story continues in the 2020’s…

History Of World Pandemics
World Pandemics v COVID 19 @ early 2020’s (5 million+ | ie; 5’th worst world Pandemic ever)

UK Life Insurers & Covid 19

The last few years has been a mixed bag for many leading Life & Pensions Insurers. Providers like say Aviva or Legal & General as Covid 19 has hit hard on ‘Average Life Expectancy in United Kingdom’

Note in 2020’s so far: Various UK Life Insurers paid out over £200 million in relation to Covid 19 alone re deaths. This figure continues to rise also due to ongoing impacts, where people’s important medical health operations were delayed for months, due to noted NHS pressures and strikes etc;.

Alternatively, Britains’ State Pension bill was cut by 1.5 billion, as the Government did not have to payout ongoing payments. Likewise, the Uk Pension Providers bill for retirement income annuity payments also dropped substantially, as the average age of death Uk correspondingly dropped.

In terms of taking out new life insurance cover, all UK insurers are stating its business as usual still.

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Life Insurance UK

When you apply for comprehensive life insurance, all life insurers naturally look at calculated mortality death risk rates re ‘united kingdom life expectancy’. That is their business to then work out the average cost of life insurance.

Most Life Insurance Companies in the UK don’t just only ask ‘how old are you?’ on their medical application forms & when underwriting. Uk Life Insurers need to understand their life insurance risks. The different types of Life Insurance plans, like no medical Over 50’s lifecover, are commented on below.

Many other factors & risks come into play when looking at the average uk death rates & life insurance.

Life Expectancy For UK

Chances of making an Insurance claim | Average life expectancy in uk & 'average life expectancy in england'
*Stats changing re ‘life expectancy united kingdom’ * sapience


You are far more likely to make a claim on a Critical illness insurance, Income Protection or Total & Permanent Disability insurance, than life insurance cover alone.

How Types of Life Insurance affect costs

So, we have established that the average life expectancy in the United Kingdom re age of death is around 81. In that case, what impact do different types of life insurance have on their costs ?

*Whole of Life Insurance

Whole of life insurance guarantees ‘it will pay out’ a lump sum, whenever you die or are diagnosed terminally ill. It has no set or fixed time frame, unlike term life insurance – so it will payout. You are covered even if you live to 150 years old !

This means it is the most expensive policy available, as it will always payout, with Insurers pricing reflecting in this. It will ask medical questions so is fully underwritten insurance & may require GP reports and tests before the Life Insurance going onto cover. It can often be double the price or more of long period term insurance, as it will always payout.

Consider any lifecover plan is also setup into a suitable trust, should help to avoid probate, or potential Inheritance tax issues.

*Over 50’s Life Cover

Like the above plan, it is also a whole of lifecover policy. However, unlike this plan it asks no medical questions, maybe apart from smoker status. In so doing, most Insurers will not cover you for the first initial 1 or 2 years period to reduce their underwriting risks.

It usually offers lower levels of lifecover, but maybe ideally if you do have serious health lifestyle issues if checking Life Expectancy For United Kingdom. This could be the most expensive policy in terms of value for money however. Martin Lewis is particularly critical of these Over 50’s schemes.

Average Life Expectancy UK | One Life Live It

*Term Insurance Upto age 90

When you are looking into taking out either whole lifecover or over 50’s option above, you maybe just thinking about providing a lump sums to just pay toward a small legacy or funeral costs ? So this must payout ‘whenever you die’ and therefore as mentioned, Insurers charge accordingly for this unknown time frame.

However, for others they already have savings specifically set aside or a prepaid funeral plan. Instead, they just want to now provide their dependants with a family income backup plan for each other and well into retirement.

Some UK Insurers could maybe provide an alternative value proposition for the over 50’s, or over 60’s. Those who would just like lifecover to last well into their retirement, to help protect their ongoing lifestyle and bills.

As brokers, we are often requested for alternatives perhaps from people checking the average life expectancy in the Uk ie; average uk male life expectancy or life expectancy women Uk ? 

A Term life insurance upto age 90 sometimes could be as much as 1/2 the cost of a whole life insurance or Over 50’s lifecover comparison. The reason being that ‘it may not payout’ – as you could outlive the known plan time frame. eg; You live to age 99. Only some Insurers offer life insurance terms upto to age 90, others stop at age 85 or sooner.

Term Insurance cover asks medical questions, so best applies as long as you are generally fit and healthy. If you feel that a term life policy backup plan realistically is not needed after these ages, rather than just calculate life expectancy average, then this could be a different protection insurance alternative? 

Life Insurance with Pension in Retirement?

Life insurance with Pension World Retirement Ages | average life expectancy in uk
Life Insurance with Pension ? Check out these World Retirement Age Averages

The average life expectancy in the uk also relates to when planning for a comfortable retirement. What we do know is that ‘if you do want to perhaps live much longer, then the last thing that you want, is to run out of money in retirement’.

If the average age of death in the Uk is 81 and currently state retirement ages are 67/68. Then on that basis, you would need at least 13 years back up funds. If you lived to age 90, then 23 years savings.

However, lies damn lies and statistics again, so don’t rely solely on these single average life expectancy figures. Let’s dig abit deeper into these human gender statistics re the UK.

The reason being, if your are married, women on average live longer than men in the Uk by 4 years ie; age 79 for men & around age 83 for women. These stats however have been devastated by the pandemic 2020’s so far as you can see, and have probably watched daily on TV.

That means perhaps for around 4 years (or alot longer), your wife could find things much harder financially. You cannot rely solely on Uk state pensions perhaps to financially enjoy those final years ?

It therefore makes sense for some people to consider life insurance well into their retirements, as a ‘back up pension fund’ for their partners ie; life insurance with pension if considering average ‘life expectancy united kingdom’.

Average Life Expectancy in the UK | Who wants to live forever ?
….Life Expectancy for UK

Which Animal lives the longest?

This is an interesting question, as this article is all about human life span & average life expectancy in the Uk.

The animal kingdom it seems boasts some incredibly long lifespans, ones that far exceed the average human’s lifespan on earth.

While us humans maybe have an “absolute limit” of 150 years, this is just a blink of an eye compared with the centuries & millennia that many animals & fish live through.

Some living organisms incredibly it seems can even stop or reverse their aging process altogether! No doubt scientists have been studying that one. Nature is incredible.

Top 10 longest living animals on earth

  1. Bowhead Whale 200 years+
  2. Rough eye Rockfish 200 years+
  3. Greenland shark 270+ years
  4. Freshwater pearl mussels 280+ years
  5. Tubeworm 300+ years old
  6. Ocean quahog clams 500+ years
  7. Black Coral 4,000+ years
  8. Glass Sponge 10,000+ years
  9. Immortal Jellyfish ?
  10. Or Immortal Hydra ?

Here are some Family Pets | Average life expectancy

  • Lifespan of Cat upto 18 years
  • Lifespan of Dog upto 13 years
  • Lifespan Jack Russell upto 16 years
  • Life span of Parrot (cockatoo) upto 65 years
  • Lifespan Hamster upto 3 years
  • Lifespan Goldfish upto 10 years
  • Lifespan Horse upto 33 years
  • Lifespan Koi fish upto 35 years
  • Lifespan Turtle upto 50 years
Which Animal lives the longest ? Human lifespan versus animals | Average life expectancy in uk

Oldest living things on earth

Mayflies just live one day. Some sea animals live for 3 centuries. What could be the oldest living organism on the planet ?

  • Sacred fig tree in Sri Lanka that is over 2,200 years old
  • Patagonian cypress tree in Chile which, at over 3,600 years old, is as old as Stonehenge
  • Great Basin bristlecone pine in California’s White Mountains “Methuselah” comes in at 4,850+ years old
  • Is nearly 5,000-year-old “Methuselah” one of the oldest single living thing on planet earth ?
  • A quaking aspen clonal tree called “Pando” estimated age ranges from a few thousand to 80,000 years old
  • Scientists try to get around this problem by equating size to age although it’s an inaccurate process

UK Average Life Expectancy Conclusion

So we can see that our ‘life expectancy in uk’ or ‘life expectancy in england’ averages compared to other world countries & some earth inhabitants.

We don’t live very long, compared to perhaps some other things on earth, which like trees look down us. The reality is, our human lifespan is relatively small on our small planet…so as they say


average life expectancy in the uk

By all means using any ‘uk life expectancy calculator’ maybe easy but sorting out your ideal life insurance cover may however seem a more difficult task, so don’t do it alone.

It’s a good idea to get professional advice from an expert – As such, we are here to help.

Article on ‘Average Life Expectancy In United Kingdom’ by Martyn Spencer Financial Adviser 2024

For reassurance re health for men & women we review many of the best brands selling Life Insurance in United Kingdom (inc NI)