Firstly this month, a study published in the Journal of Religion and Health investigated the effect of listening to Qur’anic recitation on depressive symptoms in haemodialysis patients in Iran. The authors found that listening to the Qur’an being recited had a soothing effect in Muslim patients similar to the widely used music therapy, which subsequently reduced depressive symptoms calculated using the Beck Depression Inventory-II assessment tool.
Read “The Effect of Holy Qur’an Recitation on Depressive Symptoms in Hemodialysis Patients: A Randomized Clinical Trial” here
With Ramadan just over 3 months away, another article published in the Journal of Religion and Health found that fasting may have a positive impact on blood glucose, cholesterol, and triglyceride/HDL/LDL levels.
The study analysed and compared participants’ blood samples collected on the first and last day of Ramadan (the authors did not include a mid-month sample, which would have provided a better understanding of the progression throughout the month of the different blood parameters measured).
The authors conclude that the positive biological effects of Ramadan come from improved blood glucose and lipid profiles instead of weight loss, although this may vary on geographical location and participants’ diets. This study was conducted in Pakistan and on healthy patients (many studies are done on diabetic patients), and it would be interesting to see the results of a similar study done in the UK with its longer fasting hours.
Read “Study of Human Biochemical Parameters During and After Ramadan” here
And finally this month, with gender equality (in scientific research, in Islam and within Muslims) perennially being a hot topic, an article in the Journal of Religion and Health found an increase in female representation in studies relating to Islamic bioethics in the past 15 years, both in Muslim-majority as well as non-Muslim-majority countries, with the authors arguing against the popular idea of female oppression in Muslim-majority countries.
Read “A 15-Year Review of Trends in Representation of Female Subjects in Islamic Bioethics Research” here
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