Will there be many thousand centenarians in Norway in a few years?

The number of centenarians in Norway has tripled

There could be even more in the years to come.

At the turn of the millennium, there were around 350 people in Norway who had reached the age of a hundred, according to Statistics Norway.

Now in 2024, Norway has well over 1,000 residents who are centenarians.

By the end of the year, the number will likely exceed 1,100. That’s a tripling in just a few years.

Without the pandemic, the number of centenarians could have been even higher.

Will there be 20,000 centenarians?

When the researchers at Statistics Norway look into their crystal ball – or rather, their projections – they see a formidable increase in the number of Norwegian centenarians.

In the year 2050, there could be almost 4,000 people over a hundred years old in Norway.

By the year 2100, there could be over 20,000 centenarians in the population.

Men also live to old age

Today, the majority of 100-year-olds in Norway are women. Almost 80 per cent of all centenarians in Norway are women.

But in Statistics Norway's projections, the proportion of men and women over a hundred years old will become more and more equal over time.

Eventually, there may be roughly equal numbers of each gender.

Several million centenarians

According to the UN's figures, there are now around 700,000 people in the world who are over a hundred years old.

This number could increase to nearly 4 million by the year 2054, according to the UN.

The highest number of centenarians in relation to the size of the population is in Japan. Thailand follows as the second and may surpass Japan in a few years.

How you can live to be 100 years old

Researchers in Gothenburg monitored the health of 855 men born in 1913 for a full 50 years. When some of them turned a hundred, the study was concluded.

What the researchers found to be most important for reaching a hundred years is:

  • Avoiding tobacco.
  • Try to keep your cholesterol levels and blood pressure low.
  • Reasonable fitness and limited body fat also make it more likely that you will live to old age.


Translated by Alette Bjordal Gjellesvik

Read the Norwegian version of this article on forskning.no


The Statistics Bank at Statistics Norway, including National Population Projections

Schaeffer, K. U.S. centenarian population is projected to quadruple over the next 30 years. Pew Research Center, 2024.

Wilhelmsen et al. Men born in 1913 followed to the age 100 yearsScandinavian Cardiovascular Journal, 2015. 

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