Home News More and more 100-year-olds in Belgium

More and more 100-year-olds in Belgium

Published on 26/10/2004

26 October 2004 BRUSSELS – The number of centenarians in Belgium is expected to hit 3,000 in 2020, according to a report published on Tuesday. The National Institute of Statistics said the number of 100-year-olds was rising rapidly, with 1154 recorded in 2003 – almost double the number that were living 10 years ago. It was only in 1970, that the total of 100 centenarians was recorded for the first time. In 1995, there were 633 centenarians and 546 in 1990. In 2002, there were 1083 and 917 in the Millennium year. Michel Poulain, a researcher at the Catholic University of Leuven, who has been studying the figures, said the number of 100-year-olds in Belgium had been steadily growing, with only occasional falls in numbers. He predicted there would be between 3000 and 5000 centenarians living in the country by 2030, many of whom would be women. “Today, in Belgium, for every six women centenarians there is one man,” he said. “It’s due to the difference in life expectancy between men and women, which is about seven years.” The last woman to reach the age of 110 in Belgium was Anne-Marie Adam who was born in Dinant and died in Jette. Louis Marion, born at Houyet, also lived to 110 and died last December. According to Poulain, many of these 100-plus men and women still enjoy a good state of health. “Most of those that I’ve been able to meet could still understand me and talk with me,” he said. “Some women of 110 were even fighting fit and still living at home or with relatives.” Experts think that living independently, good genes, good habits, a positive outlook, a long marriage and keeping stress to a minimum are all factors which contribute to a long life.  [Copyright Expatica 2004]

Subject: Belgian news