Hispanics in the United States outlive whites by almost three years and blacks by almost eight years, according to a new report.
The report, released by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention today, confirms the so-called “Hispanic paradox”—that despite reports of poverty and health issues, Hispanics live longer than others. These include lower income, lack of health insurance, high-risk jobs, limited access to health care and being overweight and diabetic.
Life expectancy for Hispanics at birth is 80.6 years; for whites, 78.1 years and for blacks, 72.9 years. In 2006, life expectancy for all Americans at birth was 77.7 years.
As Hispanics adopt an American lifestyle they tend to become more sedentary and eat more snack foods, meats, fat and other things associated with unhealthy living. They also smoke more after living in the United States for a time.
So what’s the secret? Although various theories have surfaced, experts can’t say for sure why Hispanics enjoy greater longevity, but government studies are under way.