WELLNESS
08/04/2011 02:39 pm ET Updated Oct 04, 2011

Who Will Live To 100? UK Report Reveals Our Chances

Today's British 20-year-olds are twice as likely as their parents and three times as likely as their grandparents to live to age 100, according to a new U.K. government report.

The statistical analysis, based on 2008 life expectancies of people in England and Wales, shows that people age 20 today have a 23 percent chance of living to 100 (19.5 percent chance for males, 26.6 percent chance for females).

Meanwhile, people age 50 have a 14.2 percent chance of reaching age 100 (11.4 percent of males, 17 percent for females) and people age 80 have a 7.7 percent chance of reaching age 100 (6.2 percent for males, 9.2 percent for females).

The report also shows that a baby born this year in the U.K. is nearly eight times more likely to reach age 100 than someone who was born in 1931 (and is age 80 today).

In addition, a baby girl currently has a 1 in 3 chance and a baby boy has a 1 in 4 chance of living to age 100, according to the report.

"These figures show just how great the differences in life expectancy between generations really are," U.K. Minister of State for Pensions Steve Webb said in a statement. "The dramatic speed at which life expectancy is changing means that we need to radically rethink our perceptions about our later lives."

The report also shows that by 2066, there will be at least 500,000 -- half a million! -- people who are age 100 or older.

The report is released shortly after another study revealed that our genes are the key to how long we live, more so than our lifestyle choices.

The life expectancy in the U.K. is currently 77.7 for males and 81.9 for females, while in the U.S., life expectancy is 75.7 for males and 80.6 for females, according to the governments' health departments.

That's way up from our life expectancy 100 years ago -- between 1900 and 1902, the average U.S. life expectancy was 49.2 years, according to a U.S. government report. Between 1949 and 1951, the average U.S. life expectancy rose to 68.1.

To see your age group's likelihood of reaching age 100 according to the U.K. projections, click here.