Rich people manage to maintain health and avoid disability on average nine years longer than the poor. The internationa study was published at The Journals of Gerontology.
"While life expectancy is a useful indicator of health, the quality of life as we get older is also crucial," lead author Paola Zaninotto, a public health specialist at University College London, said in a statement. "By measuring healthy life expectancy we can get an estimate of the number of years of life spent in favorable states of health or without disability."
Zaninotto and her colleagues analyzed data from 25,557 people over 50, taken from two studies of aging. Wealth can be safely called the most significant socio-economic factor in predicting the duration of a healthy life before age-related disorders.
According to the study, the richest 50-year-old men can expect another 31 years of life without serious age-related disorders, while the least wealthy - for 22-23 years.
As for women, the healthy life expectancy is 33 and 24 years, respectively.