Though we undoubtedly live longer on average than our ancestors did, even just a few decades ago, experts say the increase in life expectancy will continue to slow between now and 2060.

Before you shudder in disappointment, look at the numbers. In the 1800s, life expectancy was somewhere between 40 and 45 years. By 1922, a century ago, the number had climbed to 58.8 years. Historical data from the U.S. Census Bureau indicated that by 1960, life expectancy for the nation's total population was 69.7 years. By 2015, the figure had increased by a decade, bringing life expectancy to 79.4 years.

Over the past 200 years, our life expectancy has nearly doubled, but projections for the future are less optimistic.

Looking forward

A report published in 2020 by the Census Bureau predicted that by 2060, life expectancy will increase by only six years: from 79.7 years in 2017 to 85.6 years in 2060.

According to experts, the rapid increase in life expectancy throughout history is largely attributed to better healthcare, improved hygiene, a sufficient food supply and reduced childhood