Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Lema'an yaarichun yamechah

Interesting finding in a Central Bureau of Statistices (CBS) survey (covering 1998-2002):
The survey indicates that among the districts, the highest average life expectancy is in Jerusalem - 80.1 years - and the lowest is in the southern district - 77.3 years.
The survey finds a positive connection between the social-economic standard of a locale to its residents' longevity. The higher the social-economic index, the greater the longevity.
A number of cities, such as Bnei Brak, Jerusalem and Beit Shemesh are exceptions to the rule - their residents' longevity is high despite their low social-economic status.
Hmmm. J-M and BB do not just have 'low social-economic status' -- they are the two poorest cities in Israel. Is it a coincidence that all three* of these cities have a large, or very large proportion of religious residents? In other words -- does this bolster the school of thought which claims that religion is good for your health? Or is it just that sitting in yeshivah all day is less strenuous than working for a living?

*According to this site, Beit Shemesh has 70% religious -- I guess it depends what you count as Beit Shemesh).

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