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Scientists discover the maximum age a human can live to
Featured Image Credit: gorodenkoff/Getty / Portra Images/Getty

Scientists discover the maximum age a human can live to

There's really no need to panic about your next big birthday

If you're worried about the speed with which you're approaching your next 'big' birthday, then I've got some good news for you.

Sure, turning 25, 30 or 40 might seem scary, but it turns out that scientists have been able to work out the maximum age a human can live to, and I can almost guarantee you've got a good few years left.

The findings come from a study conducted by statisticians at Tilburg and Rotterdam's Erasmus universities, who looked at the age at which 75,000 people in the Netherlands died in the 30 years up to 2017.

Interestingly, they didn't focus on life expectancy to come up with their findings. Instead, the researchers wanted to question how long a single individual could live as long as they looked after themselves, and if their life wasn't cut short by an illness or other circumstance.

By taking into account how old the people in the study were when they died, the researchers determined that a person's maximum lifespan plateaus in their nineties - but that doesn't mean it's going to end.

Scientists believe people can live for years beyond their 90s.

The researchers suggested it is unlikely for a human to live beyond 115, but found that women have a slightly longer lifespan than men.

While maximum lifespan for a female topped out at 115.7 years, men were estimated to reach a maximum age of 114.1 years.

Commenting on the findings, Professor John Einmahl, one of three scientists conducting the study, told AFP: "On average, people live longer, but the very oldest among us have not gotten older over the last thirty years.

"There is certainly some kind of a wall here. Of course the average life expectancy has increased. Nevertheless, the maximum ceiling itself hasn't changed."

Some of the eldest humans ever were well past 100 years old.

In spite of the researchers' findings, Einmahl admitted there are instances of people bending the norm and living beyond these suggested maximum lifespans.

The oldest man ever verified by the Guinness World Records was a Japanese man named Jiroemon Kimura, who lived to be 116 years old.

And early last year, French nun Sister André passed away at the grand old age of 118. Following her death, Guinness World Records named US-born Maria Branyas Morera the oldest living person in the world, at 115.

In 2019, Morera conducted an interview in which she attributed her longevity to 'an orderly life that is socially very pleasant... a good life, without excesses'. Morera was born in San Francisco, California on 4 March, 1907, and moved to Catalonia in 1914.

Topics: Science, Health, Life