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You can find out exactly how you’re going to die — if you really want to

We know we’re all going to die. That, unfortunately, isn’t up for debate. But when it comes to how it’s going to happen, it’s pretty hard to predict. Until now, that is.

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Using information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, UCLA statistician Nathan Yau has put together a rather funky-looking graphic to reveal what we are most likely to die from at various points in our lives.

The interactive chart works out how likely it is that a person will die from diseases like cancer, mental illness and respiratory conditions, as well as external causes, taking into account factors such as gender and race.

It’s really simple: You enter your age, gender and ethnicity and then sit back and watch what is likely to happen to you over the rest of your life. Ultimately, the age you are today can affect what you are most likely to die of at every stage in your life.

For example, a 38-year-old white woman who dies at the age of 74 is more likely to die of cancer (33 percent) than anything else.

How will you die?
When that woman reaches 82, circulatory conditions have overtaken cancer as the most likely cause of death (37 percent).

How will you die test

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“Colour corresponds to cause of death, and the bars on the right keep track of the cumulative percentages. By the end, you’re left with the chances that you will die of each cause,” Professor Yau writes on his FlowingData website.

It turns out that regardless of your demographic group, once you’ve gone past 80 years there’s more than a 40 percent chance your cause will be circulatory.

“This surprised me, because it seems like cancer would be the leading cause just going off general news,” said Yau. “This is certainly true up to a certain age, but get past that and your heart can only keep going for so long.”

What can we take from this test? Well, we’re all going to die. But if we do what we can to prevent cancer, and keep our hearts healthy, we have a good chance of living to a ripe old age.

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