Life Expectancy Has Increased Significantly and it’s not Just Due to Child Mortality Rates

A popular theme among movements which oppose certain aspects of modern science and technology is the notion that people were healthier in the “good old days,” back before the introduction of many modern scientific advancements. The idea is that there was once a time when there were no artificial chemicals, no fluoridated water, no genetically engineered crops, no vaccines or other modern medical science, all food was organic, and everyone led longer, happier, and healthier lives. There are many variations of this particular worldview aesthetic, and different ones have different ideas as to what the biggest alleged culprits are. Some hypothesize various conspiracies involving governments and/or corporations, whereas others may simply view new technology as “unnatural” (ergo undesirable) in their estimation. The common thread, however, is the belief that people are worse off now than in centuries past, and that one or more forms of human intervention are at fault. (more…)