A study from the Institute of Medical Metrics and Assessment (IHME) at Washington University in Seattle was published in The Lancet and compares public health in the world between 1950 and 2017.
In almost half the world, especially in Europe and North and South America, not enough children are born to maintain their population size. At the same time, childbirth in Africa and Asia is still rising, the average woman in Niger, who during her life has raised seven children.
Education to the main factor
Ali Mokdad, professor of IHME, says one of the most important factors for population growth is education.
If a woman is practicing, she spends more of her time at school, she will postpone her pregnancy, and therefore she will have fewer children, she says.
According to IHME, Cyprus is the least fertile country in the world – the average Cypriot woman in life gives birth to a child. On the other hand, women in Mali, Chad and Afghanistan have on average more than six children.
Mokdad says that while people in developing countries are continuing to grow, their economies are generally rising, which usually has a decreasing effect on childbirth over time.
Countries are expected to be economically better and fertility is likely to decrease and to balance.
Increased service life
We also live longer than ever. The expected total life expectancy for men has increased to 71 from 48 in 1950. Women are expected to live at 76 compared to 53 in 1950.
Cardiac disease is now the most common cause of death worldwide, says IHME. Already in 1990 there were newborn problems, followed by lung disease and diarrhea.
You see fewer deaths for infectious diseases because the country gets richer but also more disabilities because people live longer, says Ali Mokdad.
He stressed that although deaths from infectious diseases such as malaria and tuberculosis have decreased significantly since 1990, new non-communicable diseases have occurred.
There are some behaviors that lead to more cases of cardiovascular disease and cancer. Obesity is number one – it grows every year and our behavior contributes to it, he says.