The widows and their husbands dying off today are of a different generation. It was a generation where there were traditional roles of women staying at home or, at best, working menial jobs. Their men, meanwhile, were the breadwinners working long hours and sometimes in horrendous conditions. Over time, this degree of stress and physical hardship culminates in heart attacks, strokes, high blood pressure, and other debilitating diseases. Women are catching up, however, as they integrate into stress-related jobs. For example, I'm seeing more women losing their hair, and more women are requiring medications as they get older. But there's also psychological differences that can shorten lifespan. Men tend to take life more seriously than women. That "laughter is the best medicine" is not a joke. And women tend to laugh and be playful more than men. But one can't simply say "men" and "women" either. There are sociological factors that play a large part in lifespan. And consider, too, that Asian men who live in Asia generally live longer than Westernized Asian men. Much of this has to do with diet. Anyway, such questions need to be broken down into ethnicity, area of the country or the world, nature of job, and even genetic makeup to fully understand why one sex lives longer than the other.