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Thread: Could menstruation cause the longer life span of women?

  1. #1 Could menstruation cause the longer life span of women? 
    Forum Ph.D. Raziell's Avatar
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    Males have the same blood running through them pretty much all the time, however females having menstruation cycles would have their blood renewed regulary right?

    I was wondering if this might be one of the reasons women have longer life spans. Is losing blood healthy considering the body simply makes new blood? Are there waste or toxins in the blood, even a MINIMAL amount? Because this would indeed mean "renewing" it will be healthy right?


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  3. #2 Re: Could menstruation cause the longer life span of women? 
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell
    Males have the same blood running through them pretty much all the time, however females having menstruation cycles would have their blood renewed regulary right?

    I was wondering if this might be one of the reasons women have longer life spans. Is losing blood healthy considering the body simply makes new blood? Are there waste or toxins in the blood, even a MINIMAL amount? Because this would indeed mean "renewing" it will be healthy right?
    I am not a doctor, nor a scientist of any kind. However, my instincts tell me that I should say this: if you are thinking of bleeding yourself, please don't.


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  4. #3  
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    This reminds me of the Saturday Night Live skits, where Theodoric of York, Medieval Barber, played by Steve Martin, prescribed bloodletting for every medical condition.

    Actually, though, I did hear about a theory that excessive iron, from eating red meat, leads to heart attacks, so that it could be beneficial for men to donate blood often.
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  5. #4 Re: Could menstruation cause the longer life span of women? 
    Forum Cosmic Wizard i_feel_tiredsleepy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raziell
    Males have the same blood running through them pretty much all the time, however females having menstruation cycles would have their blood renewed regulary right?

    I was wondering if this might be one of the reasons women have longer life spans. Is losing blood healthy considering the body simply makes new blood? Are there waste or toxins in the blood, even a MINIMAL amount? Because this would indeed mean "renewing" it will be healthy right?
    Blood cells in women and men have the same lifespan within the bloodstream. It is more likely to involve the major physiological differences with hormones and lifestyle. We also have to consider the environmental differences, for instance if you are looking at heart disease patients, men will have a greater life expectancy because their veins are larger and easier to operate on. Although, men are more likely to have heart disease in general. We don't know how much of the life expectancy is due to environmental factors or physiological differences.

    Menstruation I don't think is the reason, after all this is usually the major reason for anemia in women, it comes with more cost than benefits.
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    Sorry if Iím committing an act of forum necrophilia by posting in an old topic (I didn't see any rules about it, but if that was just me being blind feel free to tell me off!), but I actually had a discussion with a lecturer today that you might find interesting and seemed relevant to this question.

    My lecturer suggested that the reason that women live longer is because they express higher levels of oestradiol-17β (E2) than men for the majority of their lives.

    E2 has been shown to increase coronary flow and cardiac output in sheep (hereís a paper that mentions it Ė towards the end of the abstract). Itís is also believed to reduce LDL, apolipoprotein and chylomicron remnant levels in the blood after meals and possibly regulate nitric oxide levels. This would lead to a person who is less likely to die from a cardiovascular disease.

    So itís less likely to be involved with actual blood loss in menstruation, and more likely to be about the differences in levels of hormones expressed between men and women.
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  7. #6  
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    The difference in lifespans is a rather broad trend and I'm sure it has to do with a complex combination of factors. For example, women tend not to take as many risks as men (see driving safety rates and rates of violent crime as examples) and are thus less likely to die in accidents. That will tend to push their average up. Doubtless this has a biological as well as cultural basis.
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  8. #7  
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    Menstruation takes place when an egg cell dies, well I think the life span has nothing to do with it maybe it has something to do with the activity of a person for as we al know mostly men are more prone to vices
    Prevention is way better than cure
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