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A new study has found that there’s one thing that can add up to nine years to your life expectancy: being really rich.

Not just that – being wealthy means you are more likely to spend the extra nine years living a healthy "in favourable states of health or without disability".

A study published in the Journal of Gerontology that took place across the UK and US over 10 years looked at all of the social and economic factors behind people falling into ill health as they get older.

Dr Paolo Zaninotto, a professor in epidemiology and healthcare at University College London which led the research, said:

We found that socio-economic inequalities in disability-free life expectancy were similar across all ages in England and the US but the biggest socio-economic advantage in both countries and across all age groups was wealth.

The study was based on the idea that quality of life is important to determining our health as we get older.

The paper showed that at 50 years old, the richest men in England and the US lived an additional 31 healthy years compared with 22 to 23 for the poorest groups.

A lot of this won’t come as a surprise to many – with more money, people can afford more time off, better healthcare, more vacations, and a better quality of life overall.

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