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Tastes from our past can spark memories, trigger pain or boost wellbeing. Here’s how to embrace food nostalgia

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/megan-lee-490875">Megan Lee</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/doug-angus-1542552">Doug Angus</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kate-simpson-1542551">Kate Simpson</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a></em></p> <p>Have you ever tried to bring back fond memories by eating or drinking something unique to that time and place?</p> <p>It could be a Pina Colada that recalls an island holiday? Or a steaming bowl of pho just like the one you had in Vietnam? Perhaps eating a favourite dish reminds you of a lost loved one – like the sticky date pudding Nanna used to make?</p> <p>If you have, you have tapped into <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02699931.2022.2142525">food-evoked nostalgia</a>.</p> <p>As researchers, we are exploring how eating and drinking certain things from your past may be important for your mood and mental health.</p> <h2>Bittersweet longing</h2> <p>First named in 1688 by Swiss medical student, <a href="https://www.jstor.org/stable/44437799">Johannes Hoffer</a>, <a href="https://compass.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1111/spc3.12070">nostalgia</a> is that bittersweet, sentimental longing for the past. It is experienced <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1111/j.1467-8721.2008.00595.x">universally</a> across different cultures and lifespans from childhood into older age.</p> <p>But nostalgia does not just involve positive or happy memories – we can also experience nostalgia for <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2F0022-3514.91.5.975">sad and unhappy moments</a> in our lives.</p> <p>In the <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Femo0000817">short and long term</a>, nostalgia can positively impact our health by improving <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fa0025167">mood</a> and <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Femo0000817">wellbeing</a>, fostering <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fa0017597">social connection</a> and increasing quality of life. It can also trigger feelings of <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Femo0000817">loneliness or meaninglessness</a>.</p> <p>We can use nostalgia to <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Fa0025167">turn around a negative mood</a> or enhance our sense of <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/doiLanding?doi=10.1037%2Femo0000817">self, meaning and positivity</a>.</p> <p>Research suggests nostalgia alters activity in the <a href="https://academic.oup.com/scan/article/17/12/1131/6585517">brain regions associated with reward processing</a> – the same areas involved when we seek and receive things we like. This could explain the <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2352250X22002445?via%3Dihub">positive feelings</a> it can bring.</p> <p>Nostalgia can also increase feelings of loneliness and sadness, particularly if the memories highlight dissatisfaction, grieving, loss, or wistful feelings for the past. This is likely due to activation of <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352250X22002445?casa_token=V31ORDWcsx4AAAAA:Vef9hiwUz9506f5PYGsXH-JxCcnsptQnVPNaAGares2xTU5JbKSHakwGpLxSRO2dNckrdFGubA">brain areas</a> such as the amygdala, responsible for processing emotions and the prefrontal cortex that helps us integrate feelings and memories and regulate emotion.</p> <h2>How to get back there</h2> <p>There are several ways we can <a href="https://psycnet.apa.org/fulltext/2006-20034-013.html">trigger</a> or tap into nostalgia.</p> <p>Conversations with family and friends who have shared experiences, unique objects like photos, and smells can <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S2352250X23000076">transport us back</a> to old times or places. So can a favourite song or old TV show, reunions with former classmates, even social media <a href="https://www.theverge.com/2015/3/24/8284703/facebook-on-this-day-nostalgia-recap">posts and anniversaries</a>.</p> <p>What we eat and drink can trigger <a href="https://www.emerald.com/insight/content/doi/10.1108/QMR-06-2012-0027/full/html">food-evoked nostalgia</a>. For instance, when we think of something as “<a href="https://theconversation.com/health-check-why-do-we-crave-comfort-food-in-winter-118776">comfort food</a>”, there are likely elements of nostalgia at play.</p> <p>Foods you found comforting as a child can evoke memories of being cared for and nurtured by loved ones. The form of these foods and the stories we tell about them may have been handed down through generations.</p> <p>Food-evoked nostalgia can be very powerful because it engages multiple senses: taste, smell, texture, sight and sound. The sense of <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09658211.2013.876048?casa_token=wqShWbRXJaYAAAAA%3AqJabgHtEbPtEQp7qHnl7wOb527bpGxzIJ_JwQX8eAyq1IrM_HQFIng8ELAMyuoFoeZyiX1zeJTPf">smell</a> is closely linked to the limbic system in the brain responsible for emotion and memory making food-related memories particularly vivid and emotionally charged.</p> <p>But, food-evoked nostalgia can also give rise to <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/hpja.873">negative memories</a>, such as of being forced to eat a certain vegetable you disliked as a child, or a food eaten during a sad moment like a loved ones funeral. Understanding why these foods <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/02699931.2022.2142525?casa_token=16kAPHUQTukAAAAA%3A9IDvre8yUT8UsuiR_ltsG-3qgE2sdkIFgcrdH3T5EYbVEP9JZwPcsbmsPLT6Kch5EFFs9RPsMTNn">evoke negative memories</a> could help us process and overcome some of our adult food aversions. Encountering these foods in a positive light may help us reframe the memory associated with them.</p> <h2>What people told us about food and nostalgia</h2> <p>Recently <a href="https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1002/hpja.873">we interviewed eight Australians</a> and asked them about their experiences with food-evoked nostalgia and the influence on their mood. We wanted to find out whether they experienced food-evoked nostalgia and if so, what foods triggered pleasant and unpleasant memories and feelings for them.</p> <p>They reported they could use foods that were linked to times in their past to manipulate and influence their mood. Common foods they described as particularly nostalgia triggering were homemade meals, foods from school camp, cultural and ethnic foods, childhood favourites, comfort foods, special treats and snacks they were allowed as children, and holiday or celebration foods. One participant commented:</p> <blockquote> <p>I guess part of this nostalgia is maybe […] The healing qualities that food has in mental wellbeing. I think food heals for us.</p> </blockquote> <p>Another explained</p> <blockquote> <p>I feel really happy, and I guess fortunate to have these kinds of foods that I can turn to, and they have these memories, and I love the feeling of nostalgia and reminiscing and things that remind me of good times.</p> </blockquote> <p>Understanding food-evoked nostalgia is valuable because it provides us with an insight into how our sensory experiences and emotions intertwine with our memories and identity. While we know a lot about how food triggers nostalgic memories, there is still much to learn about the specific brain areas involved and the differences in food-evoked nostalgia in different cultures.</p> <p>In the future we may be able to use the science behind food-evoked nostalgia to help people experiencing dementia to tap into lost memories or in psychological therapy to help people reframe negative experiences.</p> <p>So, if you are ever feeling a little down and want to improve your mood, consider turning to one of your favourite comfort foods that remind you of home, your loved ones or a holiday long ago. Transporting yourself back to those times could help turn things around.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232826/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/megan-lee-490875">Megan Lee</a>, Senior Teaching Fellow, Psychology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/doug-angus-1542552">Doug Angus</a>, Assistant Professor of Psychology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kate-simpson-1542551">Kate Simpson</a>, Sessional academic, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/bond-university-863">Bond University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/tastes-from-our-past-can-spark-memories-trigger-pain-or-boost-wellbeing-heres-how-to-embrace-food-nostalgia-232826">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

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‘I keep away from people’ – combined vision and hearing loss is isolating more and more older Australians

<p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/moira-dunsmore-295190">Moira Dunsmore</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/annmaree-watharow-1540942">Annmaree Watharow</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/emily-kecman-429210">Emily Kecman</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a></em></p> <p>Our <a href="https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/ageing-and-health">ageing population</a> brings a growing crisis: people over 65 are at greater risk of dual sensory impairment (also known as “deafblindness” or combined vision and hearing loss).</p> <p>Some 66% of people over 60 have hearing loss and 33% of older Australians have low vision. Estimates suggest more than a quarter of Australians over 80 are <a href="https://www.senseswa.com.au/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/a-clear-view---senses-australia.pdf">living with dual sensory impairment</a>.</p> <p>Combined vision and hearing loss <a href="https://doi.org/10.1177/0264619613490519">describes</a> any degree of sight and hearing loss, so neither sense can compensate for the other. Dual sensory impairment can occur at any point in life but is <a href="https://doi.org/10.1016/j.annepidem.2012.02.004">increasingly common</a> as people get older.</p> <p>The experience can make older people feel isolated and unable to participate in important conversations, including about their health.</p> <h2>Causes and conditions</h2> <p>Conditions related to hearing and vision impairment often <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-we-lose-our-hearing-and-vision-as-we-age-67930">increase as we age</a> – but many of these changes are subtle.</p> <p>Hearing loss can start <a href="https://www.who.int/teams/noncommunicable-diseases/sensory-functions-disability-and-rehabilitation/highlighting-priorities-for-ear-and-hearing-care">as early as our 50s</a> and often accompany other age-related visual changes, such as <a href="https://www.mdfoundation.com.au/">age-related macular degeneration</a>.</p> <p>Other age-related conditions are frequently prioritised by patients, doctors or carers, such as <a href="https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports-data/health-conditions-disability-deaths/chronic-disease/overview">diabetes or heart disease</a>. Vision and hearing changes can be easy to overlook or accept as a normal aspect of ageing. As an older person we interviewed for our <a href="https://hdl.handle.net/2123/29262">research</a> told us</p> <blockquote> <p>I don’t see too good or hear too well. It’s just part of old age.</p> </blockquote> <h2>An invisible disability</h2> <p>Dual sensory impairment has a significant and negative impact in all aspects of a person’s life. It reduces access to information, mobility and orientation, impacts <a href="https://doi.org/10.1080/09638280210129162">social activities and communication</a>, making it difficult for older adults to manage.</p> <p>It is underdiagnosed, underrecognised and sometimes misattributed (for example, to <a href="https://doi.org/10.1093/geronb/gbz043">cognitive impairment or decline</a>). However, there is also growing evidence of links between <a href="https://doi.org/10.1002/dad2.12054">dementia and dual sensory loss</a>. If left untreated or without appropriate support, dual sensory impairment diminishes the capacity of older people to live independently, <a href="https://doi.org/10.1002/dad2.12054">feel happy and be safe</a>.</p> <p>A dearth of specific resources to educate and support older Australians with their dual sensory impairment means when older people do raise the issue, their GP or health professional may not understand its significance or where to refer them. One older person told us:</p> <blockquote> <p>There’s another thing too about the GP, the sort of mentality ‘well what do you expect? You’re 95.’ Hearing and vision loss in old age is not seen as a disability, it’s seen as something else.</p> </blockquote> <h2>Isolated yet more dependent on others</h2> <p>Global trends show a worrying conundrum. Older people with dual sensory impairment become <a href="https://doi.org/10.1002/dad2.12054">more socially isolated</a>, which impacts their mental health and wellbeing. At the same time they can become increasingly dependent on other people to help them navigate and manage day-to-day activities with limited sight and hearing.</p> <p>One aspect of this is how effectively they can <a href="https://doi.org/10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2020.25522">comprehend and communicate in a health-care setting</a>. Recent research shows <a href="http://dx.doi.org/10.3390/healthcare12080852">doctors and nurses in hospitals</a> aren’t making themselves understood to most of their patients with dual sensory impairment. Good communication in the health context is about more than just “knowing what is going on”, <a href="https://www.mdpi.com/2227-9032/12/8/852">researchers note</a>. It facilitates:</p> <ul> <li>shorter hospital stays</li> <li>fewer re-admissions</li> <li>reduced emergency room visits</li> <li>better treatment adherence and medical follow up</li> <li>less unnecessary diagnostic testing</li> <li>improved health-care outcomes.</li> </ul> <h2>‘Too hard’</h2> <p>Globally, there is a better understanding of how important it is to <a href="https://www.who.int/publications/i/item/9789240030749">maintain active social lives</a> as people age. But this is difficult for older adults with dual sensory loss. One person told us</p> <blockquote> <p>I don’t particularly want to mix with people. Too hard, because they can’t understand. I can no longer now walk into that room, see nothing, find my seat and not recognise [or hear] people.</p> </blockquote> <p>Again, these experiences increase reliance on family. But caring in this context is tough and largely <a href="https://doi.org/10.3389/feduc.2020.572201">hidden</a>. Family members describe being the “eyes and ears” for their loved one. It’s a 24/7 role which can bring <a href="https://doi.org/10.1159/000507856">frustration, social isolation and depression</a> for carers too. One spouse told us:</p> <blockquote> <p>He doesn’t talk anymore much, because he doesn’t know whether [people are] talking to him, unless they use his name, he’s unaware they’re speaking to him, so he might ignore people and so on. And in the end, I noticed people weren’t even bothering him to talk, so now I refuse to go. Because I don’t think it’s fair.</p> </blockquote> <p>So, what can we do?</p> <p>Dual sensory impairment is a growing problem with potentially devastating impacts.</p> <p>It should be considered a unique and distinct disability in all relevant protections and policies. This includes the right to dedicated diagnosis and support, accessibility provisions and specialised skill development for health and social professionals and carers.</p> <p>We need to develop resources to help people with dual sensory impairment and their families and carers understand the condition, what it means and how everyone can be supported. This could include communication adaptation, such as social haptics (communicating using touch) and specialised support for older adults to <a href="https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/09649069.2019.1627088">navigate health care</a>.</p> <p>Increasing awareness and understanding of dual sensory impairment will also help those impacted with everyday engagement with the world around them – rather than the isolation many feel now.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/232142/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/moira-dunsmore-295190">Moira Dunsmore</a>, Senior Lecturer, Sydney Nursing School, Faculty of Medicine and Health, University of Sydney, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>; <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/annmaree-watharow-1540942">Annmaree Watharow</a>, Lived Experience Research Fellow, Centre for Disability Research and Policy, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a>, and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/emily-kecman-429210">Emily Kecman</a>, Postdoctoral research fellow, Department of Linguistics, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/i-keep-away-from-people-combined-vision-and-hearing-loss-is-isolating-more-and-more-older-australians-232142">original article</a>.</em></p>

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From lettuce fields to opera stages – the brilliant journey of Helen Sherman

<p>How does a young girl growing up on a lettuce farm in rural New South Wales, surrounded by the quiet rustle of leaves and the hum of daily farm life, go on to become such a powerful voice on the operatic scene? This is the unlikely beginning of Helen Sherman, the Australian-British mezzo-soprano who has taken the world of opera by storm. </p> <p>Sherman’s musical journey began at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where her extraordinary voice started to attract attention. It wasn't long before her ambition led her to the prestigious Royal Northern College of Music (RNCM) in the UK. There, she honed her craft, setting the stage for a remarkable career that would see her representing Australia at the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World competition and the Francisco Viñas International Singing Competition.</p> <p>Sherman's rise to operatic fame has been nothing short of meteoric. Her versatility and talent have seen her perform a wide range of roles across the globe. Recent highlights include Flora in <em>La traviata</em> at the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, and Octavian in <em>Der Rosenkavalier</em> and Cherubino in <em>Le nozze di Figaro</em> with Opera North. Her portrayal of Tamiri in <em>Farnace</em> with Pinchgut Opera and Dorabella in <em>Così fan tutte</em> at Teatru Manoel in Malta further cemented her reputation as a mezzo-soprano of extraordinary range and depth.</p> <p>One of Sherman’s standout performances was her interpretation of the title role in <em>Carmen</em> with the State Opera South Australia. Her embodiment of Carmen’s fiery spirit and complex emotions captivated audiences and critics alike. Equally compelling was her portrayal of Giulio Cesare with Bury Court Opera, a role that showcased her ability to navigate the demanding vocal and dramatic challenges of baroque opera.</p> <p>In 2024, Sherman’s calendar is as busy as ever, as she will be singing Dorabella in <em>Così fan tutte</em> and Mistress of the Novices in <em>Suor Angelica</em> for Opera Australia, roles that promise to highlight her versatility and emotional depth. </p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-weight: 400; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-align: left; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; white-space: normal; background-color: #ffffff; text-decoration-thickness: initial; text-decoration-style: initial; text-decoration-color: initial;">Over60 was lucky enough to be able to interview Sherman in the lead-up to her Sydney performances of <span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;"><a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/il-trittico-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Il Trittico</a> </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;">and <a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/cosi-fan-tutte-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Così fan tutte</a></span>: </p> <p><em><strong>O60: How did you become an opera singer after growing up on a lettuce farm in rural NSW? </strong></em></p> <p>“It was quite a journey. My father was an incredible piano accordionist (think Flight of the Bumblebee, Malagueña etc). In the 1970s his teaching studio in Bathurst peaked at about 40 accordion students, which I think is quite remarkable. After his father died, Dad stepped back from his teaching to take over the family farm, though he still plays to this day. </p> <p>“My mother is a music lover, and wanted her children to have the opportunity to explore creative outlets that she wasn't fortunate enough to explore in her youth, so my brother, sister and I all had lessons in piano accordion, piano, dancing, drama and singing. We were fortunate to live in a town that had many thriving arts organisations, such as the Dolly McKinnon School of Dance, Bathurst Eisteddfod Society and Mitchell Conservatorium of Music. </p> <p>“Bathurst's Carillon Theatrical Society (for which my dad's cousin, the late, great, Carole Eastment, was choreographer) afforded us the opportunity to be part of full-scale classic musical productions. I was also fortunate to attend MacKillop College, a local Catholic high school of humble proportions, that had a very passionate and resourceful music teacher, Mr David Eyles. Thanks to him, students like me were able to star in wittily re-written and orchestrated G&amp;S productions. With such a plethora of opportunities at my feet, my love of the stage was pretty much pre-determined.</p> <p>“Upon graduating high school, aged seventeen, I moved to Sydney to take up a place at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where I completed a Bachelor of Music and a post graduate diploma in opera. At this stage, I wasn't really in love with opera, that came later, when I found myself covering third novice in OA's 2007 production of Suor Angelica.</p> <p>“During the last studio run of the show, mere metres away from me, star soprano Cheryl Barker was singing the final solo notes of the title role: ‘Madonna! Madonna! Salva me! Salva me!’, tears streaming down her face, and the most incredible voice soaring out; I had chills all over my body and in my soul, and I have loved opera ever since.” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>You were based in London for years; how did you find the opera world overseas versus in Australia – in both your studies and performing? </strong></em></p> <p>“I guess the main differences are that the UK scene is a bigger one with more companies and more music schools; a more international one, that students and professionals from around the world flock to, and one with – historically – more financial backing and patronage. However, the scene in the UK has suffered dramatically in the last few years, particularly with the effects of Brexit compounded by COVID, cost-of-living crisis and embarrassingly ignorant cuts made by the Arts Council. </p> <p>“Generally, abroad, there are many more opportunities for musicians, but many, many more musicians competing for them. It is an awe-inspiring thing to meet and work with musical idols like Roger Vignols, Julius Drake, Yvonne Kenny etcetera, to sing a piece of music in the venue in which it premiered or was composed for; to tread the same cobblestones that the likes of Mozart and Handel trod and to delight in the discovery that the shoes or trousers you're wearing in a production bear the name of the likes of Dame Sarah Connolly.” </p> <p>“However, I would say that there is plenty of exciting stuff going on in Australia and an optimism and openness in the Australian people, which is impactful on our industry and its creative output. </p> <p>“More needs to be done in our country to insure all children are given creative learning outlets for the benefit of their development, their communities and for the future of our industry.” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>Why did you return to Sydney and how are you enjoying it? Any future plans to head back overseas? </strong></em></p> <p>“After a health scare in 2022 that forced me to cancel all my work, my husband received a job offer to relocate to Sydney. It felt like the universe was opening a door for us, so we gladly walked through it, and onto a flight to Sydney in mid 2023. I have felt welcomed (back!) with open arms both personally and professionally and I have no imminent plans to return abroad, at this stage.” </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>You’ve appeared in many staged productions as well as concerts. What do you like about these two types of performances? </em></strong></p> <p>“Concert performances are a chance to home in on the music and the words without worrying about physical action. Staged productions afford the performer the luxury of inhabiting and exploring a character, physically, right down to their shoes and petticoats. Both are wonderful ways of working and some works naturally lend themselves to one or the other – though, I think for opera, context is key, and can be a challenge to properly manufacture on the concert platform.” </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>Tell us about your two characters and how do you prepare for performing two roles in different operas in the same season? </em></strong></p> <p>“I've been playing the role of Mistress of Novices in Suor Angelica and am currently preparing the role of Dorabella in Così fan Tutte. One is a senior nun and the other an excitable teenage girl, so they are rather disparate. </p> <p>“The big challenge is in the early days of learning and memorising the role. Once you have a grasp of the music, the libretto and who you are, it's about showing up and reacting to your world. Preparing disparate roles concurrently can be a vocal challenge, since tessitura and vocal gesture have a big impact on how one might approach a score. I like to keep in touch, daily, with technical exercises that encourage economy and flexibility in my voice, especially when I'm working on contrasting roles. Thankfully, the human voice is a very sensitive instrument and responds intuitively to intention and emotion, so developing the character arc and subtext helps a lot with that. </p> <p><strong><em><span style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </span>What should audiences be watching and/or listening out for Il Trittico versus in Così fan tutte? </em></strong></p> <p>“There's so much to enjoy so let it wash over you in broad, beautiful, very human brushstrokes!! Or, if you love little details, in Il Trittico see if you can spot which singers appear in all three operas and watch out for Frugola's bag of strange objects in Il Tabarro. You'll learn a lot from the body language and small glances between characters in the world of Suor Angelica, and in Gianni Schicchi, well, I am told there is a very interesting door stop!</p> <p>“In Così fan Tutte, listen out for the way Mozart creates subtext for his characters; tiny details, like Dorabella needing to sing a third higher than Fiordiligi (because she is the competitive younger sister!) when emotionally fraught in some of their act one recitatives! Mozart is a genius of musical detail!” </p> <p><em><strong style="font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, 'Segoe UI', Roboto, Oxygen, Ubuntu, Cantarell, 'Open Sans', 'Helvetica Neue', sans-serif;">O60: </strong><strong>Do you have any dream roles you’re yet to perform? </strong></em></p> <p>“There are too many to list, but I adore the role of Octavian in der Rosenkavalier by Strauss (a role I have sung, but would love to revisit) and I would love to sing Ariodante by Händel.”</p> <p>---</p> <p style="box-sizing: border-box; margin-top: 0px; margin-bottom: 1rem; color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px; background-color: #ffffff;"><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, 'system-ui', 'Segoe UI', Roboto, 'Helvetica Neue', Arial, sans-serif, 'Apple Color Emoji', 'Segoe UI Emoji', 'Segoe UI Symbol', 'Noto Color Emoji'; font-size: 16px;">Click here for more information on </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;"><a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/il-trittico-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Il Trittico</a> </span><span style="color: #212529; font-family: -apple-system, system-ui, Segoe UI, Roboto, Helvetica Neue, Arial, sans-serif, Apple Color Emoji, Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Symbol, Noto Color Emoji;">and <a href="https://opera.org.au/productions/cosi-fan-tutte-sydney/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Così fan tutte</a>. </span></p>

Music

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School mourns after beloved teacher falls from roof

<p>A beloved former teacher is being remembered as an educator who “loved a laugh and to have fun” after he suffered critical injuries following a fall. </p> <p>Paul Hogan, 61, was reportedly retrieving balls from the roof of St Margaret Mary’s School in Spotswood, Melbourne when he fell 3m to the concrete ground at around 2:30 pm on Thursday. </p> <p>He suffered critical head injuries and was taken to hospital, where he died on Friday. </p> <p>It is reported that students were still at school and parents were on campus for parent-teacher interviews, when the incident occurred. </p> <p>Hogan worked as a teacher and principal at several schools across the city, with an extensive 36-year career in education. </p> <p>“We extend our sincere condolences to Paul’s family, friends and colleagues, and we hold all of those impacted in our hearts and prayers," Melbourne Archdiocese Catholic Schools executive director Dr Edward Simons said. </p> <p>“Paul was a friend and mentor to many in our MACS community and he will be dearly missed.”</p> <p>Hogan had his first classroom teaching role in 1988. </p> <p>He retired in 2022, but continued to work as a part-time and casual relief teacher at  St Anne’s Sunbury, St Mary’s Ascot Vale, and St Margaret Mary’s Spotswood. </p> <p>Ascot Vale Panthers Junior Football Club said Hogan served as a “confidant, mentor and friend” to all who attended St Mary’s.</p> <p>“His infectious personality, energy and passion saw him loved by parents and students alike,” the club said.</p> <p>“Hoges was a tremendous supporter of the Ascot Vale Panthers Junior Football Club and the wider Ascot Vale community.”</p> <p>WorkSafe is investigating the incident. </p> <p><em>Images: 7NEWS</em></p>

Caring

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Secret transcripts from Jeffrey Epstein investigation finally released

<p>Secret transcripts from the 2006 Grand Jury investigation into allegations of sex trafficking and rape against Jeffrey Epstein have been made public for the first time. </p> <p>On Monday, approximately 150 pages of unseen transcripts were released to the public, which were released weeks earlier than originally anticipated. </p> <p>“It is our hope that the release of these records gives peace of mind to our community and gives Jeffrey Epstein’s victims the closure they deserve,” Clerk of the Circuit Court in Palm Beach County, Florida, Joseph Abruzzo, said in a <a title="www.mypalmbeachclerk.com" href="https://www.mypalmbeachclerk.com/Home/Components/News/News/734/16" target="_blank" rel="noopener">press release</a>.</p> <p>In February, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill that allowed the documents to be released, with the judge planning a hearing for next week to discuss when and how they would be released. </p> <p>“The details in the record will be outrageous to decent people,” Circuit Judge Luis Delgado wrote in his ruling. </p> <p>“The testimony taken by the Grand Jury concerns activity ranging from grossly unacceptable to rape – all of the conduct at issue is sexually deviant, disgusting, and criminal.”</p> <p>The transcripts detail a testimony in 2005, where an anonymous 17-year-old girl was approached by a friend who said she could make $US200 ($300) if she gave a massage “to a wealthy man in Palm Beach”.</p> <p>She went to his house and was led to a room by Epstein’s assistant, and was instructed to remove her clothes by the millionaire. </p> <p>According to Palm Beach Police Detective Joe Recarey’s testimony, Epstein told the girl he would pay her if she brought “girls” to his home, “And he told her, ‘the younger, the better’.”</p> <p>Over an undetermined amount of time, the girl brought six friends from her high school to Epstein’s home, including a 14-year-old girl.</p> <p>Following the Grand Jury investigation in 2006, Epstein took a plea deal with South Florida federal prosecutors in 2008. </p> <p>The deal, which has been criticised for being too lenient, allowed him to get away with several federal charges of abuse against underage girls if he pleaded guilty to Florida state charges, as he pleaded guilty to soliciting and procuring a minor for prostitution.</p> <p>Epstein was found dead in his jail cell in August 2019 after spending just over a month in custody as he awaited sentencing.</p> <p><em>Image credits: MGG/Shutterstock Editorial/Palm Beach County Circuit Court</em></p>

Legal

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What are financial years – and why are they different from calendar years?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/michaela-rankin-1544784">Michaela Rankin</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p>Yesterday was July 1, the first day of the new financial year in Australia.</p> <p>Also called fiscal years, financial years are often abbreviated in print. The one that’s just begun in Australia – July 1 2024 to June 30 2025 – will typically be denoted by FY24/25 or FY25.</p> <p>As the name suggests, financial years are used for financial reporting, tax and budgeting purposes. Whether you are preparing an individual tax return or financial statements for a business, it is important to understand the difference between financial and calendar years.</p> <p>Both have 365 days. But the calendar year, based on the <a href="https://www.timeanddate.com/calendar/gregorian-calendar.html">Gregorian calendar</a>, runs from New Years’ Day on January 1 through to December 31.</p> <p>Australian financial years on the other hand run from July 1 of one year to June 30 the next.</p> <p>But this July to June financial year <a href="https://web.archive.org/web/20200430054150/https:/www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/fields/228.html">does not apply</a> in all countries. Many align their financial year with the calendar year, but others have further variations still.</p> <p>So why are they different, and what does that mean for businesses operating across borders?</p> <h2>Different around the world</h2> <p>In contrast to our own, the United Kingdom’s financial year starts on April 6 each year and runs to April 5 the next.</p> <p>The English and Irish New Year traditionally fell on March 25, when taxes and other accounts were due. But in the 18th century, the British empire switched from the Roman Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, and had to <a href="https://www.bowesbrooks.co.uk/why-does-the-tax-year-start-on-6th-april/">adjust the start date</a> to avoid losing tax revenue.</p> <p>India’s fiscal year runs from April 1 until March 31, for a <a href="https://www.idfcfirstbank.com/finfirst-blogs/finance/reasons-why-the-financial-year-starts-from-april">number of reasons</a>. Historically a country that was heavily focused on agriculture, this timeframe aligned with the crop cycle and allowed the government to develop financial plans for the sector.</p> <p>The British empire also influenced the April reporting schedule in India, as prior to independence many financial policies were based on the British system.</p> <h2>Government budgets play a role</h2> <p>In the United States, fiscal years once ran from July 1 to June 30, like Australia’s do now. But in 1974 this was <a href="https://www.federaltimes.com/management/budget/2022/09/20/why-the-us-federal-fiscal-year-2023-starts-in-october/">changed</a> to instead span October 1 to September 30, giving Congress more time to agree on a budget each year.</p> <p>In the US, however, companies can also <a href="https://www.business.com/articles/how-to-decide-on-fiscal-year/">choose their own</a> fiscal years. Some choose a calendar year, but others elect dates that better align with their business cycle.</p> <p>Walmart’s, for example, ends on January 31 each year to reflect its typically strong financial performance over the holiday period at the end of the year.</p> <p>In Australia, the financial year matches government reporting cycles.</p> <p>Unlike the northern hemisphere, our parliamentarians typically take holidays over summer in December and January, which makes meeting over November and December to approve government budgets difficult.</p> <p>The federal budget is issued in May for the following financial year, giving parliament time to consider it before the new fiscal year begins.</p> <h2>Comparing (and taxing) performance</h2> <p>Regardless of the time period over which a financial year operates, its primary purpose is to provide a standardised time frame for financial reporting.</p> <p>Financial years allow income and expenses to be tracked and compared over the same timeframe each year. This allows investors to compare business performance across consistent periods. They are also used to determine the collection of personal income tax.</p> <p>Our government uses this information to calculate the amount of tax it will collect through the Australian Taxation Office each year.</p> <p>Businesses with operations spanning multiple countries may have to contend with fiscal years that do not align. Where this is the case, they may need to choose one financial year for the whole company, typically that used by the parent company.</p> <p>Keeping track of the financial year is helpful for individuals, in knowing when tax returns need to be prepared (and when to expect end-of-financial-year sales).</p> <p>It is also important for businesses to consider the financial year in making budgeting, business and tax planning decisions. <!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/233655/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/michaela-rankin-1544784"><em>Michaela Rankin</em></a><em>, Professor and Head, Department of Accounting, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/monash-university-1065">Monash University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/what-are-financial-years-and-why-are-they-different-from-calendar-years-233655">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Money & Banking

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Wellness is not women’s friend. It’s a distraction from what really ails us

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kate-seers-1131296">Kate Seers</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/charles-sturt-university-849">Charles Sturt University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rachel-hogg-321332">Rachel Hogg</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/charles-sturt-university-849">Charles Sturt University</a></em></p> <p>Wellness is mainly marketed to women. We’re encouraged to eat clean, take <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CYqaatWPxvy/">personal responsibility</a> for our well-being, happiness and life. These are the hallmarks of a strong, independent woman in 2022.</p> <p>But on the eve of International Women’s Day, let’s look closer at this <a href="https://theconversation.com/how-neoliberalism-colonised-feminism-and-what-you-can-do-about-it-94856">neoliberal feminist</a> notion of wellness and personal responsibility – the idea women’s health and well-being depends on our individual choices.</p> <p>We argue wellness is not concerned with actual well-being, whatever wellness “guru” and businesswoman Gwyneth Paltrow <a href="https://goop.com/wellness/">suggests</a>, or influencers say on Instagram.</p> <p>Wellness is an industry. It’s also a seductive distraction from what’s really impacting women’s lives. It glosses over the structural issues undermining women’s well-being. These issues cannot be fixed by drinking a turmeric latte or #livingyourbestlife.</p> <h2>What is wellness?</h2> <p>Wellness <a href="https://globalwellnessinstitute.org/press-room/statistics-and-facts/">is an</a> unregulated US$4.4 trillion global industry due to reach almost $7 trillion by 2025. It promotes self-help, self-care, fitness, nutrition and spiritual practice. It <a href="https://globalwellnessinstitute.org/what-is-wellness/">encourages</a> good choices, intentions and actions.</p> <p>Wellness is alluring because it feels empowering. Women are left with a sense of control over their lives. It is particularly alluring in times of great uncertainty and limited personal control. These might be during a relationship break up, when facing financial instability, workplace discrimination or a global pandemic.</p> <p>But wellness is not all it seems.</p> <h2>Wellness blames women</h2> <p>Wellness implies women are flawed and need to be fixed. It demands women resolve their psychological distress, improve their lives and <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1360780418769673?journalCode=sroa">bounce back from adversity</a>, regardless of personal circumstances.</p> <p>Self-responsibility, self-empowerment and self-optimisation underpin how women are expected to think and behave.</p> <p>As such, wellness <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CZs2iIxrSwb/">patronises women</a> and <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CT3bw_Yhsp6/">micro-manages their daily schedules</a> with journaling, skin care routines, 30-day challenges, meditations, burning candles, yoga and lemon water.</p> <p>Wellness encourages women to improve their appearance through diet and exercise, manage <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CZ7IO7qJHZ_/">their surroundings</a>, <a href="https://www.businessnewsdaily.com/5489-female-leadership-advice.html">performance at work</a> and their capacity to <a href="https://www.apa.org/topics/covid-19/working-women-balance">juggle the elusive work-life balance</a> as well as <a href="https://medium.com/authority-magazine/having-a-positive-mental-attitude-and-thinking-process-is-a-successful-key-to-healthy-wellbeing-ae11e303969c">their emotional responses</a> <a href="https://theconversation.com/planning-stress-and-worry-put-the-mental-load-on-mothers-will-2022-be-the-year-they-share-the-burden-172599">to these pressures</a>. They do this with support from costly life coaches, psychotherapists and self-help guides.</p> <p>Wellness demands women <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CaFc2o7OHSf/">focus on their body</a>, with one’s body a measure of their commitment to the task of wellness. Yet this ignores how much these choices and actions cost.</p> <p>Newsreader and journalist Tracey Spicer <a href="https://www.instagram.com/p/CaDh28nBp4k/">says</a> she has spent more than A$100,000 over the past 35 years for her hair to “look acceptable” at work.</p> <p>Wellness keeps women <a href="https://www.hercampus.com/school/bu/the-male-gazes-effect-from-beauty-ideals-to-mental-health/">focused on their appearance</a> and keeps them spending.</p> <p>It’s also <a href="https://medium.com/artfullyautistic/the-dark-reality-of-wellness-culture-and-ableism-307307fcdafb">ableist</a>, <a href="https://www.byrdie.com/wellness-industry-whitewashing-5074880">racist</a>, <a href="https://msmagazine.com/2020/07/16/tools-of-the-patriarchy-diet-culture-and-how-we-all-perpetuate-the-stigma/">sexist</a>, <a href="https://www.self.com/topic/anti-aging">ageist</a> and <a href="https://www.rnz.co.nz/news/on-the-inside/422517/the-pursuit-of-wellness-wellness-is-for-the-wealthy">classist</a>. It’s aimed at an ideal of young women, thin, white, middle-class and able-bodied.</p> <h2>But we can’t live up to these ideals</h2> <p>Wellness assumes women have equal access to time, energy and money to meet these ideals. If you don’t, “<a href="https://www.theguardian.com/society/2021/may/08/the-self-help-cult-of-resilience-teaches-australians-nothing">you’re just not trying hard enough</a>”.</p> <p>Wellness also <a href="https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1360780418769673?journalCode=sroa">implores women</a> to be “adaptable and positive”.</p> <p>If an individual’s #positivevibes and wellness are seen as <a href="https://ideas.ted.com/why-we-should-say-no-to-positivity-and-yes-to-our-negative-emotions/">morally good</a>, then it becomes morally necessary for women to engage in behaviours framed as “investments” or “self-care”.</p> <p>For those who do not achieve self-optimisation (hint: most of us) this is a personal, shameful failing.</p> <h2>Wellness distracts us</h2> <p>When women believe they are to blame for their circumstances, it hides structural and cultural inequities. Rather than questioning the culture that marginalises women and produces feelings of doubt and inadequacy, wellness provides solutions in the form of superficial empowerment, confidence and resilience.</p> <p>Women don’t need wellness. They are unsafe.</p> <p><a href="https://www.ourwatch.org.au/quick-facts/">Women are</a> <a href="https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/people/crime-and-justice/personal-safety-australia/latest-release">more likely</a> to be murdered by a current or former intimate partner, with reports of the <a href="https://theconversation.com/what-governments-can-do-about-the-increase-in-family-violence-due-to-coronavirus-135674">pandemic increasing</a> the risk and severity of <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/society/2020/dec/01/the-worst-year-domestic-violence-soars-in-australia-during-covid-19">domestic violence</a>.</p> <p>Women are more likely to be employed in unstable <a href="https://lighthouse.mq.edu.au/article/april-2020/Pandemics-economic-blow-hits-women-hard">casualised labour, and experience economic hardship and poverty</a>. Women are also bearing the brunt <a href="https://grattan.edu.au/report/womens-work/">of the economic fallout from COVID</a>. Women are more likely to be juggling a career with <a href="https://www.bmj.com/content/374/bmj.n1972">unpaid domestic duties</a> and more likely <a href="https://www.mercyfoundation.com.au/our-focus/ending-homelessness/older-women-and-homelessness/">to be homeless</a> as they near retirement age.</p> <p>In their book <a href="https://www.dukeupress.edu/confidence-culture#:%7E:text=They%20argue%20that%20while%20confidence,responsible%20for%20their%20own%20conditions.">Confidence Culture</a> UK scholars Shani Orgad and Rosalind Gill argue hashtags such as #loveyourbody and #believeinyourself imply psychological blocks, rather than entrenched social injustices, are what hold women back.</p> <h2>What we should be doing instead</h2> <p>Wellness, with its self-help rhetoric, <a href="http://www.consultmcgregor.com/documents/research/neoliberalism_and_health_care.pdf">absolves the government</a> of responsibility to provide transformative and effectual action that ensures women are safe, delivered justice, and treated with respect and dignity.</p> <p>Structural inequity was not created by an individual, and it will not be solved by an individual.</p> <p>So this International Women’s Day, try to resist the neoliberal requirement to take personal responsibility for your wellness. Lobby governments to address structural inequities instead.</p> <p><a href="https://www.mindful.org/why-women-should-embrace-their-anger/">Follow your anger</a>, not your bliss, call out injustices when you can. And in the words of sexual assault survivor and advocate Grace Tame, “make some noise”.<!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kate-seers-1131296">Kate Seers</a>, PhD Candidate, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/charles-sturt-university-849">Charles Sturt University</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/rachel-hogg-321332">Rachel Hogg</a>, Lecturer in Psychology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/charles-sturt-university-849">Charles Sturt University</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/wellness-is-not-womens-friend-its-a-distraction-from-what-really-ails-us-177446">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Mind

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"Why is the water so salty?" and other priceless questions from clueless tourists

<p>In the heart of the stunning intersection where the Daintree Rainforest kisses the Great Barrier Reef, you’ll find <a href="https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Attraction_Review-g499639-d1045292-Reviews-Ocean_Safari-Cape_Tribulation_Daintree_Region_Queensland.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">Ocean Safari</a> – a top-notch, eco-certified tour company. Brooke Nikola, one of their delightful tour guides, has been guiding wide-eyed adventurers through this paradise for years. With thousands of tourists coming from all corners of the globe, she’s accumulated a treasure trove of amusing anecdotes that could rival the size of the reef itself.</p> <p>Let’s dive right into the deep end with some classic moments <a href="https://www.news.com.au/travel/australian-holidays/queensland/hilarious-comments-from-clueless-tourists/news-story/ad90a419cbf4fed9d454d3edef0cb096" target="_blank" rel="noopener">per news.com.au</a>. One sunny day, while marvelling at the endless blue expanse, a curious tourist asked Brooke, “Why does the water taste so salty?”</p> <p>“Well, it’s the ocean,” Brooke gently reminded them. Ah, the wonders of seawater – still a mystery to some.</p> <p>Then there was the time aboard the Ocean Safari vessel, cruising serenely over the waves, when a perplexed guest inquired, “How far above sea level are we?” </p> <p>And who could forget the would-be scientist who attempted to bottle the stunning blue ocean water, only to be baffled when it turned out clear. We can only imagine Brooke explaining the tricky science of light refraction and how the ocean's mesmerising blue doesn't quite fit into a bottle. No doubt their holiday turned into an impromptu science lesson.</p> <p>The complaints Brooke hears are just as priceless. One guest, dripping after a snorkelling session, grumbled, “Ugh, snorkelling makes me so wet.” </p> <p>Then there was the revelation about the rainforest. As rain drizzled through the lush canopy, a bewildered tourist remarked, “It’s so rainy in the rainforest!” Who knew that rain would be part of the rainforest experience? Certainly not that guest!</p> <p>Geography can be tricky, especially in a place as uniquely named as Cape Tribulation. As tourists boarded the Ocean Safari vessel from Cape Tribulation beach, one asked where the Daintree Rainforest was – oblivious to the verdant scenery they had driven through for the past hour. Brooke had to kindly point out that they had been in it this whole time.</p> <p>Another classic came from a guest who thought Cape Tribulation was an island. They earnestly asked, “So, how big is the whole island?” To which Brooke replied, “It’s pretty big. So big, in fact, it’s known as Australia!”</p> <p>Through all of these delightful moments, no doubt Brooke remained a fountain of patience and good humour. So, next time you find yourself at Cape Tribulation, remember to bring your sense of wonder – and a good laugh. Because as Brooke can tell you, the Great Barrier Reef is full of surprises, both above and below the water!</p> <p><em>Images: Ocean Safari / Instagram</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Michael Mosley used science communication to advance health and wellbeing. We can learn a lot from his approach

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/lauren-ball-14718">Lauren Ball</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kirsten-adlard-684475">Kirsten Adlard</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a></em></p> <p>Overnight, we learned of the <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-06-09/michael-mosley-body-found-greek-island-clare-bailey-mosley/103957382">tragic passing</a> of Michael Mosley, who went missing last week while on holiday on the Greek island of Symi.</p> <p>The British celebrity doctor was a household name in many countries, including Australia. Mosley was well known for his television shows, documentaries, books and columns on healthy eating, weight management, physical activity and sleep.</p> <p>During the days he was missing and once his death was confirmed, media outlets have acknowledged Mosley’s <a href="https://www.independent.co.uk/arts-entertainment/tv/features/michael-mosley-tv-doctor-death-b2558717.html">career achievements</a>. He is being celebrated for his connection to diverse public audiences and his unrelenting focus on science as the best guide to our daily habits.</p> <h2>From medicine to the media</h2> <p>Mosley was born in India <a href="https://www.bbc.com/news/articles/c8770jyz6vvo">in 1957</a> and was sent to England at age seven to attend boarding school. He later studied philosophy, politics and economics at the <a href="https://michaelmosley.co.uk/biog/">University of Oxford</a>. After a short stint in investment banking, Mosley opted to train in medicine at the Royal Free Hospital in London.</p> <p>Rather than forging a career in clinical practice, <a href="https://michaelmosley.co.uk/biog/">Mosley</a> started working at the BBC in 1985 as a trainee assistant producer. In the decades that followed, Mosley continued to work with the BBC as a producer and presenter.</p> <p>Mosley became a popular public figure by applying his medical training to journalism to examine a breadth of health and wellbeing topics. In 1995, following his documentary on <em><a href="https://genome.ch.bbc.co.uk/baf970949e3a46a992ae52420395a7c2">Helicobacter pylori</a></em>, a bacterium that causes ulcers in the stomach, the British Medical Association named him <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/profiles/2kczjZKp8sGSDxSxKYzxsyr/michael-mosley">medical journalist of the year</a>.</p> <p>His other television work on diet, weight management, exercise and sleep earned him <a href="https://www.emmys.com/bios/michael-mosley">Emmy</a>, <a href="https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0608839/awards/">BAFTA</a> (the British Academy of Film and Television Arts), and <a href="https://rts.org.uk/tags/michael-mosley">Royal Television Society</a> <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/profiles/2kczjZKp8sGSDxSxKYzxsyr/michael-mosley">award nominations</a>.</p> <p>Over the past decade, Mosley published <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/Fast-Diet-Original-Revised-Research/dp/1780722370/ref=sr_1_6?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAjuAotTN">several books</a> on <a href="https://www.fishpond.com.au/Books/Fastexercise-Michael-Mosley-Peta-Bee-With/9781476759982?utm_source=googleps&amp;utm_medium=ps&amp;utm_campaign=AU&amp;gad_source=1&amp;gclid=CjwKCAjw34qzBhBmEiwAOUQcF3wd7d1bj8KMFeEtKS6ZU7py5rRzjiycZhcsMbSEQ9lXhjEBcY4GRxoCwgIQAvD_BwE">exercise</a>, <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/8-Week-Blood-Sugar-Diet-Recipe/dp/1925456595/ref=sr_1_7?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAjuAotTNxxkW3">healthy eating</a>, <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/Fast-800-Australian-New-Zealand/dp/B07MPRQWJP/ref=sr_1_8?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAjuAotTNxxkW">intermittent fasting</a>, <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/Weeks-Better-Sleep-life-changing-improved/dp/1761425927/ref=sr_1_1?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAj">sleep</a> and <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/Just-One-Thing-Changes-Transform/dp/B0BJVRP94X/ref=sr_1_9?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAjuAotTNxxk">behaviour change</a>. He sold millions of copies of his books around the world, including at least <a href="https://www.simonandschuster.com.au/p/mosley-1mil-sales">one million</a> in Australia and New Zealand.</p> <p>Alongside his wife, Dr Clare Bailey Mosley, he recently embarked on a <a href="https://michaelmosley.co.uk/live/">live theatre show tour</a>, yet another vehicle to bring his key messages to audiences.</p> <h2>A trusted voice</h2> <p>Mosley became a trusted voice for health and wellbeing throughout his journalistic career. His television program <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b04j9gny">Trust Me, I’m a Doctor</a> drew on his medical qualifications to discuss health and wellbeing credibly on a public platform. His medical training also inferred credibility in examining the scientific literature that underpins the topics he was communicating.</p> <p>At the same time, Mosley used simple terminology that captured the attention of diverse audiences.</p> <p>For many of Mosley’s outputs, he used himself as an example. For instance, in his <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p09by3yy/episodes/downloads">podcast series</a> Just One Thing and <a href="https://www.amazon.com.au/Just-One-Thing-Changes-Transform/dp/B0BJVRP94X/ref=sr_1_9?dib=eyJ2IjoiMSJ9.75_akcxo8tanyLrD4CVMwd1lCTliHyckSLPU2W7K4HmdPqRlVqvMbKWKkJ6CPCsrFsAw4Vfw5SWOYkl_Y8ah4yNCSjQksdT3ByCSHhiycNB9AB5h6vVUqB99okxDDWPaXUCwD-CZMzHZDvAjuAotTNxxk">companion book</a>, Mosley self-tested a range of evidence-based behavioural habits (while also interviewing subject-matter experts), covering topics such as eating slowly, yoga, listening to music, cooking, gardening and drinking green tea.</p> <p>His focus on intermittent fasting and high-intensity training was fuelled by his <a href="https://www.abc.net.au/news/2024-06-08/how-dr-michael-mosley-popularised-intermittent-fasting/103952408">diagnosis of type 2 diabetes</a>, and his work on sleep health was based on his experience <a href="https://www.sbs.com.au/food/article/sleep-revolution-michael-mosley/okmv5o7qe">with chronic insomnia</a>.</p> <p>At the most extreme end of the spectrum, Mosley <a href="https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-25968755">infested himself with tapeworms</a> in the pursuit of exploring their effects on the human body.</p> <p>By using himself as a <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/media/article/2024/jun/09/michael-mosley-favourite-health-tip-slow-deep-breathing">human guinea pig</a>, he fostered a connection with his audience, showing the <a href="https://www.chronicle.com/article/the-personal-touch-using-anecdotes-to-hook-a-reader">power</a> of personal anecdotes.</p> <h2>Some controversies along the way</h2> <p>Despite his notable career achievements, Mosley received ongoing criticisms about his work due to differing opinions within the medical and scientific communities.</p> <p>One key concern was around his promotion of potentially risky diets such as intermittent fasting and other restrictive diets, including the 5:2 diet and low-carb diets. While <a href="https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC9946909/">some evidence</a> supports intermittent fasting as a way to improve metabolic health and enable weight management, Mosley was criticised for not fully acknowledging the potential risks of these diets, such as a potential to lead to <a href="https://clindiabetesendo.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s40842-023-00152-7">disordered eating</a> habits.</p> <p>His promotion of low-carb diets also raised concerns that his work added to a diet-focused <a href="https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/lose-a-stone-in-21-days-channel-4-criticism-eating-disorder-food-relationship-beat-a9656531.html">culture war</a>, ultimately to the detriment of many people’s relationship with food and their bodies.</p> <p>More broadly, in his efforts to make scientific concepts simple and accessible to the general public, Mosley was sometimes criticised for overgeneralising science. The concern was that he didn’t properly discuss the nuance and tension inherent in scientific evidence, thereby providing an incomplete synthesis of the evidence.</p> <p>For example, Mosley conceptualised the <a href="https://thebloodsugardiet.com">blood sugar diet</a> (a low-carbohydrate Mediterranean-style diet), which was <a href="https://www.bbc.com/news/health-68452019">criticised</a> for lacking a strong grounding in scientific evidence. Similarly, <a href="https://www.thetimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/article/smoke-and-mirrors-the-truth-about-vaping-nmpf3przr">associating his name with e-cigarettes</a> may have drawn unhelpful attention to the topic, irrespective of the underlying details.</p> <h2>What can we learn from Mosley?</h2> <p>Overall, Mosley has been objectively successful in communicating scientific concepts to large, engaged audiences. Mosley showed us that people want to consume scientific information, whether through the news media, social media, podcasts or books.</p> <p>His passion and persistence in using science to promote health and wellbeing have likely supported public health efforts across the globe.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/231934/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/lauren-ball-14718"><em>Lauren Ball</em></a><em>, Professor of Community Health and Wellbeing, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a> and <a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/kirsten-adlard-684475">Kirsten Adlard</a>, Supervisor of Engagement, Communication, and Outreach, Centre for Community Health and Wellbeing, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/the-university-of-queensland-805">The University of Queensland</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Ken McKay/ITV/Shutterstock Editorial </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/michael-mosley-used-science-communication-to-advance-health-and-wellbeing-we-can-learn-a-lot-from-his-approach-231934">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Caring

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Wild moment giraffe snatches toddler from car

<p>A father has recalled the heart-stopping moment his toddler was snatched by a giraffe at a safari park in Texas. </p> <p>Jason Toten, 24, his fiancé Sierra Robert, 23, and their daughter Paisley were at Fossil Rim Wildlife Centre in Glen Rose where visitors can drive-through the park and get close to wild animals. </p> <p>"We were having a little family day, just getting out of the house," Jason told a local news outlet. </p> <p>While the family were admiring the view, one giraffe slowly approached them and the pair encouraged their daughter to offer it some food, but within an instant, the two-year-old girl was lifted into the air.</p> <p>"I looked out the back window and I saw the giraffe … and then up she went," Jason recalled. </p> <p>The giraffe, who was only trying to grab the bag of food from Paisley, accidentally hoisted the toddler up by her shirt, with other park visitors behind them capturing the wild moment. </p> <p>Sierra reacted immediately and clung to her child, as she was pulled into the air, and all it took for the giraffe to let go was a stern "hey". </p> <p>The giraffe then dropped the tot back into the car uninjured, and throughout the entire ordeal Paisley was the bravest of them all. </p> <p>"I guess it startled the giraffe. She wasn't even scared," Jason recalled. </p> <p>"As soon as her mom caught her, she went 'oh.'" </p> <p>"It scared me but after it was all over, we realised everyone was safe and unharmed, and we laughed about it," Jason added. </p> <p>After the incident, the family took Paisley to the gift shop and "all she wanted was a giraffe toy and a giraffe T-shirt."</p> <p>"We ended up getting her both, we figured she deserved it."</p> <p><em>Images: Facebook</em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Tiny reason for huge commitment: Grandad to run from Perth to Sydney

<p>John Harb admits he’s never been much of a runner. But that’s about to change, when the 62-year-old grandad and yoga enthusiast runs from Perth to Sydney for his granddaughter Luna.</p> <p>Little Luna came into the world three months early at Sydney's Royal Hospital for Women, in February, and at just 500 grams, she was the same weight as a tub of butter. </p> <p>The experience left John in awe, not only of his baby granddaughter, but of the magic that happens in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at the hospital.</p> <p>“To watch Luna over the past three months, and witness her strength and her fighting spirit has been incredible,” said John. </p> <p>“Seeing my daughter Michelle and her husband Nick, and all the other parents and premature babies in the ward going through such a difficult time but being so well supported by the doctors and nurses made me want to do something to help,” he said.</p> <p>“When I discovered 80 percent of the equipment in the unit, including the equipment that kept Luna alive, was purchased through donations, I wanted to do something big.”</p> <p>Taking inspiration from Nedd Brockman, John has decided to run across the country with the goal of raising one-million-dollars to support the NICU.</p> <p>Currently training by running 15 kilometres a day, John has sourced advice from a range of experts including Brockman himself, who made a special visit to the NICU after hearing of John’s plans.</p> <p>He plans to commence his run at Cottesloe Beach on 1 October and arrive at The Royal Hospital for Women, Randwick in early December.</p> <p>Royal Hospital for Women Foundation General Manager Elise Jennings said John’s commitment will allow the hospital to purchase more lifesaving equipment on their wish list, like a new ultrasound machine for high risk pregnancies. </p> <p>“I have come to know John through the time he spent in the NICU supporting Michelle and Luna and I know how passionate he is about making a difference for those who come after Luna and we are incredibly grateful to John for his commitment. Running from Perth to Sydney is a huge undertaking, especially for a grandfather in his 60s with no previous long distance running experience, but if anyone can do it, he can.”</p> <p> “We are thrilled that John is announcing his run as part of our major annual fundraiser, Heart for Her, in recognition not only of the extraordinary care received by Michelle and Luna, but for all of the babies and families who come through our doors.”</p> <p>“For three decades now, The Royal Hospital for Women Foundation has funded the best medical equipment, innovative research, people and programs but we rely on the generosity of our donors to do this.” </p> <p>Donations can be made <a title="https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb" href="https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb" data-outlook-id="eed61181-8705-430d-a478-3f5f14e8b008">https://www.royalwomen.org.au/fundraisers/johnharb</a></p> <p><em>Image credits: Supplied</em></p>

Family & Pets

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Why you should never take nutrition advice from a centenarian

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bradley-elliott-1014864">Bradley Elliott</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-westminster-916">University of Westminster</a></em></p> <p>It’s a cliche of reporting on people who reach 100 years of age, or even 110, to ask them some variation of the question: “What did you do to live this long?”</p> <p>Inevitably, some interesting and unexpected answer is highlighted. <a href="https://www.theguardian.com/society/2024/apr/05/briton-says-becoming-worlds-oldest-man-at-111-is-pure-luck">Fish and chips</a> every Friday. Drinking a glass of <a href="https://news.sky.com/story/worlds-oldest-man-juan-vicente-perez-dies-aged-114-13107627">strong liquor</a> every day. <a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/susannah-mushatt-jones-loves-bacon-2015-10">Bacon</a> for breakfast every morning. <a href="https://apnews.com/article/health-france-nursing-homes-795c8273f66b61669e93103cc9c25cd0">Wine and chocolate</a>.</p> <p>While a popular news story, this is a relatively meaningless question that doesn’t help us understand why certain people have lived so long. Let me try to explain why, via beautiful buildings, fighter pilots and statistics.</p> <p>In the second world war, Allied statisticians were applying their skills to minimising the number of bombers being shot down by enemy fire. By studying the damage patterns of bombers returning from action, maps could be drawn up of the most frequently damaged parts of aeroplanes so that expensive, heavy armour could be added to these areas.</p> <p>Simple enough, right? Then, along comes statistician Abraham Wald who argues for the exact <a href="https://www.jstor.org/stable/2287454?origin=crossref">opposite point</a>. The planes that they’re studying are all those that did return from combat with extensive damage, but what about those that didn’t return?</p> <p>Wald argues that armour should be added to those places that are undamaged on all the returning planes, as any plane hit in these undamaged areas was shot down, never making it back to be surveyed.</p> <h2>Survivorship bias</h2> <p>This phenomenon is known as survivorship bias, or the cognitive and statistical bias introduced by only counting those that are around to count but ignoring those that haven’t “survived”.</p> <p>You can take these examples to the absurd. Imagine a group of 100 people, all of whom have smoked their entire life. As a group, the smokers would die earlier of cancers, lung disease or heart disease, but one or two might defy the odds and live to 100 years of age. Now imagine the intrepid journalist interviewing the lucky soul on their 100th birthday with that classic question: “What do you attribute your successful ageing to?”</p> <p>“Smoking a pack a day,” says the newly minted centenarian.</p> <p>It seems obvious but survivorship bias is everywhere in society. We can all think of that one famous actor or entrepreneur who succeeded despite adversity, who worked hard, believed in themselves and one day made it. But we never read about or hear about the countless examples of people who tried, gave it their all and never quite made it.</p> <p>That’s not a good media story. But this creates a bias, we primarily hear the successes, never the failures. This bias applies to our perceptions of architecture (mostly great buildings from a given period “survive”), to finances (we often hear examples of people who have succeeded in risky investments, those who fail don’t sell books or self-help plans) and to career plans (“If you work hard, and drop out of college now, you can be a successful athlete like me,” say those who have succeeded).</p> <p>I work with a variety of older people and often include extreme outliers who have lived to extreme ages. We’re currently studying over 65-year-olds who have maintained unusually high levels of exercise into older age and have maintained excellent health.</p> <p>They’re phenomenal examples of older humans, many of them are faster, fitter and stronger than me by many of the measures we perform in the lab, despite being almost twice my age.</p> <p>While we know that their lifelong exercise is associated with their unusually good health into older age, we can’t directly say one causes the other yet. It could be that highly active people are protected against chronic diseases such as cancers, diabetes and heart disease. But it also could be that these people are still active into older age as they’ve not been afflicted by cancers, diabetes or heart disease earlier in their lives.</p> <p>Conversely, there could be some unknown third factor that we’ve not yet identified about these people that both keeps them healthy and separately keeps them exercising.</p> <p>For clarity, there are things that scientists like me will say in carefully caveated, scientific language that will probably help you to live longer. Being very physically active, not eating too much and not smoking are all on that list, along with generally having a positive outlook in life, and of course, picking the right parents and grandparents.</p> <p>Correlation does not equal causation. That point is hammered home relentlessly to students in science degrees. It’s how our brain works, we see a pattern between two variables, and assume they’re linked in some way. But often, like in survivorship bias, we’re not looking at all the data, and so finding patterns where there are none.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/229159/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bradley-elliott-1014864">Bradley Elliott</a>, Senior Lecturer in Physiology, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-westminster-916">University of Westminster</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/why-you-should-never-take-nutrition-advice-from-a-centenarian-229159">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Retirement Life

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1 in 5 deaths are caused by heart disease, but what else are Australians dying from?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/garry-jennings-5307">Garry Jennings</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a></em></p> <p>Nobody dies in good health, at least in their final moments. But to think the causes of death are easy to count or that there is generally a single reason somebody passes is an oversimplification.</p> <p>In fact, in 2022, four out of five Australians had multiple conditions at the time of death listed on their death certificate, and almost one-quarter had five or more recorded. This is one of many key findings from a <a href="https://pp.aihw.gov.au/reports/life-expectancy-deaths/what-do-australians-die-from/contents/about">new report</a> from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW).</p> <p>The report distinguishes between three types of causes of death – underlying, direct, and contributory. An underlying cause is the condition that initiates the chain of events leading to death, such as having coronary heart disease. The direct cause of death is what the person died from (rather than with), like a heart attack. Contributory causes are things that significantly contributed to the chain of events leading to death but are not directly involved, like having high blood pressure. The report also tracks how these three types of causes can overlap in deaths involving multiple causes.</p> <p>In 2022 the top five conditions involved in deaths in Australia were coronary heart disease (20% of deaths), dementia (18%), hypertension, or high blood pressure (12%), cerebrovascular disease such as stroke (11.5%), and diabetes (11.4%).</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="MzQHA" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: none;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/MzQHA/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p>When the underlying cause of death was examined, the list was similar (coronary heart disease 10%, dementia 9%, cerebrovascular disease 5%, followed by COVID and lung cancer, each 5%). This means coronary heart disease was not just lurking at the time of death but also the major underlying cause.</p> <p>The direct cause of death however was most often a lower respiratory condition (8%), cardiac or respiratory arrest (6.5%), sepsis (6%), pneumonitis, or lung inflammation (4%) or hypertension (4%).</p> <h2>Why is this important?</h2> <p>Without looking at all the contributing causes of death, the role of important factors such as coronary heart disease, sepsis, depression, high blood pressure and alcohol use can be underestimated.</p> <p>Even more importantly, the various causes draw attention to the areas where we should be focusing public health prevention. The report also helps us understand which groups to focus on for prevention and health care. For example, the number one cause of death in women was dementia, whereas in men it was coronary heart disease.</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="NosVz" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: none;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/NosVz/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p>People aged under 55 tended to die from external events such as accidents and violence, whereas older people died against a background of chronic disease.</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="1l3OS" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: none;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/1l3OS/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p>We cannot prevent death, but we can prevent many diseases and injuries. And this report highlights that many of these causes of death, both for younger Australians and older, are preventable. The top five conditions involved in death (coronary heart disease, dementia, hypertension, cerebrovascular disease and diabetes) all share common risk factors such as tobacco use, high cholesterol, poor nutrition, physical inactivity, or are risk factors themselves, like hypertension or diabetes.</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="7Eb8O" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: none;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/7Eb8O/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p>Tobacco use, high blood pressure, being overweight or obese and poor diet were attributable to a combined 44% of all deaths in this report. This suggests a comprehensive approach to health promotion, disease prevention and management is needed.</p> <hr /> <p><iframe id="2MmGg" class="tc-infographic-datawrapper" style="border: none;" src="https://datawrapper.dwcdn.net/2MmGg/" width="100%" height="400px" frameborder="0"></iframe></p> <hr /> <p>This should include strategies and programs encouraging eating a healthy diet, participating in regular physical activity, limiting or eliminating alcohol consumption, quitting smoking, and seeing a doctor for regular health screenings, such as the Medicare-funded <a href="https://www.heartfoundation.org.au/your-heart/heart-health-checks">Heart Health Checks</a>. Programs directed at accident prevention, mental health and violence, especially gender-related violence, will address untimely deaths in the young.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/231598/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/garry-jennings-5307"><em>Garry Jennings</em></a><em>, Professor of Medicine, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/university-of-sydney-841">University of Sydney</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/1-in-5-deaths-are-caused-by-heart-disease-but-what-else-are-australians-dying-from-231598">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Body

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Fergie reveals the advice she received from Queen Elizabeth before she died

<p dir="ltr">Sarah Ferguson has revealed the heartfelt advice she received from Queen Elizabeth before she died.</p> <p dir="ltr">In an interview with <a href="https://www.hellomagazine.com/royalty/555582/sarah-ferguson-feeling-better-than-ever-exclusive-interview/"><em>Hello</em>!</a> magazine, the Duchess of York has opened up about her battle with cancer, and how a piece of advice she received from the late Queen helped her through her health journey. </p> <p dir="ltr">Speaking about how her outlook on life has changed after her diagnosis, Fergie reflected on what her ex-mother-in-law said to her before she passed away. </p> <p dir="ltr">"One of the only people who saw me properly was the Queen [the late Elizabeth II]," she told the publication. "And before she died, she said: 'Sarah, being yourself is enough'."</p> <p dir="ltr">The Duchess of York still carries that advice with her to this day, explaining that she's raised her daughters, Princess Beatrice and Princess Eugenie, to be honest in who they are.</p> <p dir="ltr">Fergie has previously opened up about her relationship with the late Queen, sharing how her words of wisdom have impacted her for years. </p> <p dir="ltr">In September 2023, she shared that the last thing the Queen ever said to her was to “just be yourself”. </p> <p dir="ltr">"And she saw it. She just got so annoyed when I wasn't being myself," she explained on an episode of the podcast Tea Talks with the Duchess and Sarah. "And that's probably when I got into all the pickles. But now I am myself, and I'm just so lucky to be able to be myself."</p> <p dir="ltr">Earlier that same year, the Duchess reflected on the calming presence of the Queen, telling <em><a href="https://people.com/sarah-ferguson-reveals-queen-elizabeth-last-words-before-death-7964451">People</a></em> magazine that Queen Elizabeth was "so brilliant at putting you at ease," adding, "She had the most incredible faith of any single person I've ever met."</p> <p dir="ltr">"She just knew what to do," Fergie continued. "She knew how to make people feel good. She never took it onboard as about her."</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Getty Images </em></p>

Family & Pets

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Boomers vs millennials? Free yourself from the phoney generation wars

<div class="theconversation-article-body"><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bobby-duffy-98570">Bobby Duffy</a>, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/kings-college-london-1196">King's College London</a></em></p> <p>Generational thinking is a big idea that’s been horribly corrupted and devalued by endless myths and stereotypes. These clichés have fuelled fake battles between “snowflake” millennials and “selfish” baby boomers, with younger generations facing a “war on woke” and older generations accused of “stealing” the future from the young.</p> <p>As I argue in my book, <a href="https://atlantic-books.co.uk/book/generations/">Generations</a>, this is a real shame. A more careful understanding of what’s really different between generations is one of the best tools we have to understand change – and predict the future.</p> <p>Some of the great names in sociology and philosophy saw understanding generational change as central to understanding society overall. <a href="http://dhspriory.org/kenny/PhilTexts/Comte/Philosophy2.pdf">Auguste Comte</a>, for example, identified the generation as a key factor in “the basic speed of human development”.</p> <p>He argued that “we should not hide the fact that our social progress rests essentially upon death; which is to say that the successive steps of humanity necessarily require a continuous renovation … from one generation to the next”. We humans get set in our ways once we’re past our formative years, and we need the constant injection of new participants to keep society moving forward.</p> <p>Understanding whether, and how, generations are different is vital to understanding society. The balance between generations is constantly shifting, as older cohorts die out and are replaced by new entrants. If younger generations truly do have different attitudes or behaviours to older generations, this will reshape society, and we can, to some extent, predict how it will develop if we can identify those differences.</p> <p>But in place of this big thinking, today we get clickbait headlines and bad research on millennials “<a href="https://www.businessinsider.com/millennials-hate-napkins-2016-3?r=US&amp;IR=T">killing the napkin industry</a>” or on how baby boomers have “<a href="https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/06/boomers-are-blame-aging-america/592336/">ruined everything</a>”. We’ve fallen a long way.</p> <h2>Myth busting</h2> <p>To see the true value of generational thinking, we need to identify and discard the many myths. For example, as I outline in the book, gen Z and millennials are not lazy at work or disloyal to their employers. They’re also no more materialistic than previous generations of young: a focus on being rich is something we tend to grow out of.</p> <p>Old people are not uncaring or unwilling to act on climate change: in fact, they are more likely than young people to boycott products for social purpose reasons.</p> <p>And our current generation of young are not a particularly unusual group of “culture warriors”. Young people are always at the leading edge of change in cultural norms, around race, immigration, sexuality and gender equality. The issues have changed, but the gap between young and old is not greater now than in the past.</p> <p>Meanwhile, there are real, and vitally important, generational differences hidden in this mess. To see them, we need to separate the three effects that explain all change in societies. Some patterns are simple “lifecycle effects”, where attitudes and behaviours are to do with our age, not which generation we are born into. Some are “period effects” – where everyone is affected, such as in a war, economic crisis or a pandemic.</p> <p>And finally, there are “cohort effects”, which is where a new generation is different from others at the same age, and they stay different. It’s impossible to entirely separate these distinct forces, but we can often get some way towards it – and when we do, we can predict the future in a much more meaningful way.</p> <p>There are many real generational differences, in vitally important areas of life. For example, the probability of you owning your own home is hugely affected by when you were born. Millennials are around half as likely to be a homeowner than generations born only a couple of decades earlier.</p> <p>There is also a real cohort effect in experience of mental health disorders, particularly among recent generations of young women. Our relationship with alcohol and likelihood of smoking is also tied to our cohort, with huge generational declines in very regular drinking and smoking. Each of these point to different futures, from increased strain on mental health services to declining alcohol sales.</p> <p>But lifecycle and period effects are vitally important too. For example, there is truth in the idea that we grow more conservative as we age. One analysis suggests that this ageing effect is worth around <a href="https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0261379413000875">0.35% to the Conservatives each year</a>, which may not sound like a lot, but is very valuable over the course of a political lifetime.</p> <p>And, of course, the pandemic provides a very powerful example of how period effects can dramatically change things for us all.</p> <h2>Reaching beyond the avocado</h2> <p>When there is such richness in the realities, why are there so many myths? It’s partly down to bad marketing and workplace research – that is, people jumping on the generation bandwagon to get media coverage for their products or to sell consultancy to businesses on how to engage young employees.</p> <p>This has become its own mini-industry. In 2015, US companies spent up to US$70 million (£51 million) on this sort of “advice” <a href="https://www.wsj.com/articles/helping-bosses-decode-millennialsfor-20-000-an-hour-1463505666">according to the Wall Street Journal</a>, with some experts making as much as US$20,000 an hour. Over 400 LinkedIn users now describe themselves solely as a “millennial expert” or “millennial consultant”.</p> <p>Campaigners and politicians also play to these imagined differences. Our increasing focus on “<a href="https://www.kcl.ac.uk/policy-institute/assets/culture-wars-in-the-uk.pdf">culture wars</a>” often involves picking out particular incidents in universities, such as the <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-manchester-45717841">banning of clapping</a> at events or the <a href="https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-oxfordshire-57409743">removal of a portrait of the Queen</a> to exaggerate how culturally different young people today are.</p> <p>Maybe less obviously, politicians such as former US President Barack Obama repeatedly lionise coming generations as more focused on equality, when the evidence shows they’re often not that different. These assertions are not only wrong, but create false expectations and divides.</p> <p>Some have had enough, calling on the Pew Research Center in the US, which has been a champion of generational groups, to <a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/07/07/generation-labels-mean-nothing-retire-them/&amp;data=04%257C01%257C">stop conducting this type of analysis</a>. I think that misses the point: it’s how it’s applied rather than the idea of generations that’s wrong.</p> <p>We should defend the big idea and call out the myths, not abandon the field to the “millennial consultants”.<!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/167138/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <p><em><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/bobby-duffy-98570">Bobby Duffy</a>, Professor of Public Policy and Director of the Policy Institute, <a href="https://theconversation.com/institutions/kings-college-london-1196">King's College London</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock </em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/boomers-vs-millennials-free-yourself-from-the-phoney-generation-wars-167138">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Mind

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Another man dies after fall from world's biggest cruise ship

<p>A passenger has died after he fell from the world's largest cruise ship on the first night of a week-long voyage. </p> <p>The unidentified man allegedly jumped from Royal Caribbean’s new 366 metre-long Icon of the Seas, just hours after it left a port in Miami, Florida on its way to Honduras, according to the US Coast Guard.</p> <p>“The cruise ship deployed one of their rescue boats, located the man and brought him back aboard,” the Coast Guard told the <em><a href="https://nypost.com/2024/05/28/us-news/passenger-dead-after-jumping-off-worlds-largest-cruise-ship/" target="_blank" rel="noopener">New York Post</a></em>.</p> <p>“He was pronounced deceased. Beyond assisting in the search, the US Coast Guard did not have much involvement in this incident,” the agency added.</p> <p>Royal Caribbean told the publication, “The ship’s crew immediately notified the US Coast Guard and launched a search and rescue operation”. </p> <p>“Our care team is actively providing support and assistance to the guest’s loved ones during this difficult time.”</p> <p>At the time of the incident, the cruise ship had only travelled 500km from Florida, and stopped for two hours to help the search and rescue Coast Guard team to locate the passenger. </p> <p>The man was brought back on-board in critical condition before he succumbed to his injuries and died on the ship. </p> <p>The Icon of the Seas, the world’s largest cruise ship, took its maiden voyage in January this year.</p> <p>The Royal Caribbean ship has 20 decks and is nearly the size of four city blocks, holding 7,600 passengers and 2,350 crew members.</p> <p><em>Image credits: Royal Caribbean </em></p>

Travel Trouble

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Where did money come from?

<div class="theconversation-article-body"> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/steven-hail-1302961">Steve<em>n Hail</em></a><em>, <a href="https://www.torrens.edu.au/">Torrens University Australia</a></em></p> <p>For the most part, economists continue to believe a story of money told to generations of students by a series of textbooks over the past 150 years.</p> <p>This story asks us to imagine a pre-monetary barter economy, where people bought goods and services by trading them for other goods and services.</p> <p>Eventually a suitable commodity – perhaps gold or silver – emerged as both an acceptable means of exchange for conducting trade and a convenient unit of account for expressing value.</p> <p>Later, coins were issued – eventually to be monopolised by governments – and later still paper money, credit, and banking systems.</p> <p>The problem with this story is that there is no historical evidence to support it. As was <a href="https://www.jstor.org/stable/2802221?seq=1#page_scan_tab_contents">noted</a> by prominent anthropologist Caroline Humphreys:</p> <blockquote> <p>No example of a barter economy, pure and simple, has ever been described, let alone the emergence from it of money … all available ethnography suggests that there has never been such a thing.</p> </blockquote> <p>So where did money come from exactly? One difficulty we face is that writing about money – what gives it value, and how monetary systems work – is not something young economists are generally encouraged to do.</p> <p>As a consequence, among the best articles ever written about money are two now more than 100 years old by British economist Alfred Mitchell-Innes, entitled “<a href="https://www.community-exchange.org/docs/what%20is%20money.htm">What is Money</a>?” and “<a href="https://cooperative-individualism.org/innes-a-mitchell_credit-theory-of-money-1914-dec-jan.pdf">The Credit Theory of Money</a>”.</p> <p>These papers, until recently almost completely ignored by the economics profession, tell a different story, rejecting the idea that money evolved naturally from barter.</p> <p>We can now be confident this version is closer to the truth. And it has big implications for how we think about the role of governments within monetary systems, and what gives money value. Acknowledging the true story of money would force a paradigm shift among economists – no wonder a lot of them don’t want to think about it.</p> <h2>Actually, early governments invented money</h2> <p>The truth is that money predates markets. <a href="https://youtu.be/7cLDFjTt4Bs?si=fDTafcZD_u1S23kD">Governments invented money</a> – it did not emerge independently from pre-existing barter systems.</p> <p>Market economies simply could not develop until money existed. For much of history, the currency tokens people regarded as money had little or no intrinsic value, taking the form of clay tablets, hazelwood tally sticks, base metals, shells or paper.</p> <p>The earliest forms of what Keynes called “modern money” – to distinguish it from gift tokens used for ceremonial purposes in communal groups – go back to the origins of taxation, accounting, and even literacy and numeracy. These early currencies were units of account used to assess the tributes that had to be paid to early governmental institutions in the Middle East.</p> <p>The word shekel is still used as a currency unit, but dates to ancient Babylon and the emergence of money itself, over 5,000 years ago.</p> <p>The idea that the need to pay taxes is what creates a demand for a currency was well understood by colonial governments. They knew how to introduce their currencies into countries they had invaded. To force locals to supply labour or goods to the government, they imposed a tax liability – often, a hut tax. This tax could only be paid using the currency of the colony.</p> <p>Locals had to either work for the colonial government or supply goods to others who did, else they wouldn’t have the specific currency needed to pay taxes. This created a demand for the colonial power’s currency, which the government could then spend.</p> <p>If such a government spent more overall than it withdrew in taxation – running a budget deficit – the community could add the remaining currency to its savings. Taxation and the legal system created a demand for the government’s money and provided the impetus for the development of a monetary economy.</p> <p>Even today, it’s the tax system that drives the monetary system. Demand for a government’s money is guaranteed because people need it to pay federal taxes.</p> <h2>But banks create money too</h2> <p>Actual physical cash makes up a tiny proportion of the money in circulation. Most of what we regard as money is held in our bank deposits, effectively a bunch of numbers on a ledger. Most of these bank deposits are created by banks when they make loans to us, and this is not government money at all – it is private money, created by the banks themselves.</p> <p>When a bank makes a loan to you, that loan becomes an <em>asset</em> for the bank, because you have to pay it back with interest. But at the same time, the loan appears as a deposit of funds in your account, which is a <em>liability</em> for the bank. Technically, you both owe each other.</p> <p>On paper, this means there’s now money in the system that wasn’t there before. The bank hasn’t actually lent you someone else’s money, the loan deposited in your account represents the bank’s IOU to you.</p> <p>Both the loan and the deposit are created by the bank, using nothing more than a computer keyboard. The bank has promised to use its holdings of government money to make payments on your behalf, including tax payments to the government, or to provide you with government money in the form of physical cash.</p> <p>As economist Hyman Minsky once said, “anyone can create money – the problem lies in getting it accepted”.</p> <p>Obviously, private banks don’t issue government currency. The Commonwealth government and its agent, the Reserve Bank of Australia, sit at the top of our own monetary system.</p> <p>Government-issued currency will always have value because it’s the unit of account needed to assess and pay our taxes. How much value the currency holds depends on how much the economy produces, how difficult it is to obtain the currency and on how much tax we have to pay.</p> <p>Here is some food for thought. If we accept that money and markets did not emerge naturally but had to be created by governmental institutions and legal systems, this means that there is no such thing as a genuinely free market, no such thing as a natural rate of unemployment, and no such thing as a natural distribution of income and wealth.</p> <p>The theory that money emerged naturally in the private sector encourages people to believe that free markets are natural systems in which governments only interfere. But in truth, early governments invented the very institutions of money and markets, and the regulatory frameworks that determined how those markets work and in whose interests.</p> <p>Exchange economies have always depended on systems of law and they always will. The more pertinent question concerns who writes those laws – and in whose interests those regulations are applied.</p> <hr /> <p><em>Correction: This article has been amended to reflect that a loan deposit represents a bank’s IOU to the customer, not to a bank’s other customers, as originally reported.</em><!-- Below is The Conversation's page counter tag. Please DO NOT REMOVE. --><img style="border: none !important; box-shadow: none !important; margin: 0 !important; max-height: 1px !important; max-width: 1px !important; min-height: 1px !important; min-width: 1px !important; opacity: 0 !important; outline: none !important; padding: 0 !important;" src="https://counter.theconversation.com/content/229481/count.gif?distributor=republish-lightbox-basic" alt="The Conversation" width="1" height="1" /><!-- End of code. If you don't see any code above, please get new code from the Advanced tab after you click the republish button. The page counter does not collect any personal data. More info: https://theconversation.com/republishing-guidelines --></p> <hr /> <p><a href="https://theconversation.com/profiles/steven-hail-1302961"><em>Steven Hail</em></a><em>, Associate Professor, <a href="https://www.torrens.edu.au/">Torrens University Australia</a></em></p> <p><em>Image credits: Shutterstock</em></p> <p><em>This article is republished from <a href="https://theconversation.com">The Conversation</a> under a Creative Commons license. Read the <a href="https://theconversation.com/where-did-money-come-from-229481">original article</a>.</em></p> </div>

Money & Banking

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New claim from Mexican criminal cartel over murdered Aussie brothers

<p>A member of the Sinaloa Cartel has claimed that they were the ones who handed the robbers accused of <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/finance/legal/i-killed-them-major-twist-in-slain-aussie-brothers-case" target="_blank" rel="noopener">murdering two Aussie brothers</a> and their American friend over to police. </p> <p>The city of Ensenada, near where the murders occurred, is under the control of a faction of the Sinaloa Cartel, and now they have debunked <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/travel/travel-trouble/doesn-t-add-up-new-theory-emerges-in-perth-brothers-deaths" target="_blank" rel="noopener">previous theories </a>that believed the cartel were involved somehow. </p> <p>“They were low-level robbers acting alone,” a member of the group, who chose to remain anonymous, told <em>The Daily Beast</em>. </p> <p>“But we handed them over. We learned that the cops were looking for the gringos and also began looking for those who were responsible. We called the authorities to let them know where to find them.”</p> <p>The cartel member added that the group was afraid of "unwanted attention" from Mexican authorities. </p> <p>Callum Robinson, 33, Jake Robinson, 30, and their friend Jack Carter Rhoad, 30, were all killed in what police have characterised as a bungled robbery while they were camping in the Baja California region during a surfing trip. </p> <p>The trio were reported missing on April 27 after they failed to check-in at their next accommodation. Their bodies were discovered in a well over the weekend with <a href="https://www.oversixty.com.au/health/caring/tragic-new-details-emerge-over-aussie-brothers-missing-in-mexico" target="_blank" rel="noopener">gunshots </a>to the head, around seven kilometres from where they were killed. </p> <p>Three people have been arrested, with the alleged ringleader charged with “forced disappearance”. He has not yet entered a plea and charges are expected to be upgraded to murder in the coming days. </p> <p><em>Image: Instagram/ 7NEWS</em></p>

Legal

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Catriona Rowntree shares her Europe travel hacks she picked up from locals

<p dir="ltr">After decades of hosting <em>Getaway</em>, Catriona Rowntree has learned a thing or two about travelling. </p> <p dir="ltr">Along the way, the 52-year-old has picked up some must-know secrets from locals that every traveller should know before heading to Europe.</p> <p dir="ltr">While in Mallorca in Spain, Rowntree quizzed locals on how to make the most out of her experience, and what faux pas to avoid. </p> <p dir="ltr">She was given advice on the best way to start a day at the markets, told why you should never rent an Airbnb or buy seafood on a Monday, why takeaway coffee is a bad idea and the secret to a longer, healthy life. </p> <p dir="ltr">The TV host shared a little known secret when it comes to buying fresh fish, and said travellers should not buy fish on Monday, because fishermen don’t fish on Sundays, meaning fish purchases on Mondays won’t be fresh. </p> <p dir="ltr">“The life expectancy of a Spaniard is 84, they're a healthy lot, loving a Mediterranean diet, a dollop of sun and a good climate,” she added. </p> <p dir="ltr">The presenter also discovered that all the locals she has spoken to don't like Airbnb accommodation and prefer for tourists to stay in hotels. </p> <p dir="ltr">“All the locals I've spoken to say that's what's pushing them out of their apartments as the town centres are slowly gentrified,” she said. </p> <p dir="ltr">“The average wage is low, most locals rent, sadly landlords prefer the higher fee of an Airbnb. Not cool!”</p> <p dir="ltr">Catriona's final tip is not to get your coffee takeaway, but rather sit down in a cafe, enjoy your coffee and take it slow. </p> <p dir="ltr">“People sit down to enjoy their coffee, they don't get a takeaway: 'If you can't sit for five minutes and talk to a person what's wrong with you!',” she said. </p> <p dir="ltr">Catriona said she was told by a local that the best way to start your day is to explore the markets by getting a hot chocolate and some churros. </p> <p dir="ltr">“Not every day as you'll be round, but market day for sure," she said.</p> <p dir="ltr"><em>Image credits: Instagram </em></p>

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