Elderly women struggle more than men with day-to-day tasks due to the physical toll of housework they completed when they were younger.
Researchers studied how elderly adults coped with activities such as climbing stairs and lifting shopping and found that females were more likely to have trouble completing basic physical and mental tasks.
It was noted that many women in the study - who were all born before 1960 - did not enter the workforce or higher education and were required to complete household chores.
The University College London study did find that the gap between men and women performing daily tasks has reduced in recent times.
Lead author Mikaela Bloomberg said: "It appears that gender inequalities in the ability to carry out daily tasks at an older age are decreasing over time. This could be explained by the fact that women have better access to education and are more likely to enter the paid labour force in recent generations."