Speed Reads

your health

Life expectancy up in almost every region of the world

A new study has found that since 1990, life expectancy across the world has increased by more than six years, to an average of 71.5 years.

The study, published Wednesday in the journal The Lancet, showed a major decrease in deaths from cancer and cardiovascular disease in high-income countries; in other countries, deaths from diarrhea and neonatal complications were also down. That contributed to the decline, Time reports, as did the fact that medical funding for fighting infectious diseases has increased dramatically since 1990.

It's not all good news, though. HIV/AIDS is now one of the top 10 causes of premature death, rising from 2.07 million deaths in 1990 to 2.63 million in 2013. Because of the increase in HIV/AIDS deaths, southern sub-Saharan Africa is now the only region in the world to have seen a decline in life expectancy.