Royal eunuchs outlived ‘intact’ men
A STUDY of eunuchs in Korea’s royal court has found that men without testicles live longer.
Researchers looking at the court of the Chosun Dynasty found eunuchs lived to 70 on average, 14 to 19 years longer than “intact” men of similar socio-economic status.
Three of the 81 eunuchs studied lived to 100 or more, giving the group a centenarian rate some 130 times that in developed nations today.
During the dynasty, which ran from 1392 to 1910, boys in Korea sometimes underwent castration in order to serve as eunuchs and gain access to the privileged life of the palace.
But Kyung-Jin Min of Inha University and Cheol-Koo Lee of Korea University, South Korea, believe the longevity of the eunuchs was not simply attributable to their privileged lifestyle, as they mostly lived outside the palace, only venturing in when on duty, usually as servants or guards.
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