It is reasonably common among us, we see couples together, perhaps it may be our parents, or close relatives, or just neighbours or friends. Some of those couples have been married together for a great number of years.
Then the inevitable happens. One of those long treasured partners die. To many looking on, that is exactly what happens, one just dies and leaves the other to struggle on in life on their own. But recent studies show that is not necessarily the case. It has been found that the influence of a husband or wife on their spouse's quality of life remains strong even after death, a new study says.
Couples who have been married a long time develop a high level of interdependence, and one partner's quality of life at death continues to influence the survivor, the University of Arizona researchers said.
"If your partner has higher quality of life before they pass away, you're more likely to have higher quality of life even after they're gone, and the same for lower quality of life." lead author Kyle Bourassa, a psychology doctoral student, said in a news release.
The researchers examined data from thousands of older couples in 18 European countries and Israel taking part in an ongoing study of health, aging and retirement. Specifically, the researchers compared 546 couples in which one partner had died and 2,566 couples in which both partners were still alive.
"Even though your marriage ends in a literal sense when you lose your spouse, the effects of who the person was still seems to matter even after death. I think that really says something about how important those relationships are," Kyle Bourassa said.
This ongoing connection after death is likely due to the thoughts and emotions a person has when thinking or talking about a deceased spouse, according to researchers.
"Relationships are something we develop over time and they are retained in our mind and memory and understanding of the world, and that continues even after physical separation," said study co-author Mary-Frances O'Connor, an assistant professor of psychology who specializes in grief and the grieving process.
"If you can boost someone's quality of life before they pass, that might affect not just their life, but the quality of life of their partner and their family," Kyle Bourassa said.
- HealthDay News, Feb. 5, 2106
The healing powers of honey have been known for thousands of years. Now a graduate from The University of Manchester has discovered a powerful link between a medicinal type of honey and the destruction of a fungus that can cause blindness or even death.
In the first study of its kind, student Zain Habib Alhindi used different concentrations of Surgihoney, a biologically engineered honey that produces chemically reactive molecules containing oxygen, to test how effective it could be in destroying the fungus Fusarium, which is found on plants and in soil and can cause devastating infections in vulnerable people.
Zain discovered even the lowest concentrations had a significant effect in breaking down the cell wall of the fungus, demonstrating its potential as a future treatment for patients.
She said: "Chronic infections, such as those found in long-lasting wounds comprise about 60-80 per cent of infectious diseases in humans and the way fungi invades wounds is associated with the use of broad-spectrum antibiotics.
"However, we know that biofilms -- thin layers of microorganisms, which group together -- contribute to the severity and delayed healing of chronic wounds.
"Through my research I wanted to show the potential for honey as a healing agent to break through these biofilms and in doing so increase the process of healing. What I found amazing is that honey actually works better than some antifungals..."
Professor Malcolm Richardson, Professor of Medical Mycology at The University of Manchester added: "Honey has been used since ancient times for the treatment of several diseases. Only a limited number of investigations have looked at its effect on pathogenic fungi.
"This opens an exciting door for further work on the application of honey for many fungal infections and allows researchers to adopt different options for treating a range of superficial infections."
~ScienceDaily, Feb 5, 2016
Recipe of the Month
1 small punnet tomato paste
1 t onion powder
½ t garlic powder
2 T honey
½ c raw cashews
1 t salt
½ c (approx) lemon juice
2-3 c water
Blend all ingredients together until smooth. Chill
Try this dressing over steamed vegetables for variation.