Ditch the multivitamins and pack a suitcase instead

Travel’s Health Benefits

Travel's Health Benefits

Taking time out for a long or short holiday not only makes you feel good while you’re away, research shows that you continue to reap the health benefits long after the holiday ends.
A relaxing holiday reduces your blood pressure, helps you sleep better and enables you to bounce back from stress. The benefits last at least a fortnight longer than the holiday and in some cases can be felt for months.

So how much time do you actually need away to ensure these health benefits? Surprisingly not long at all. Psychologists and researchers have concluded that longer holidays aren’t necessarily better for you than shorter ones. These experts generally recommend a weekend away if possible every 8 weeks and 2 longer holidays of 10-14 days’ duration every 6 months. It takes forward planning and discipline to schedule holidays into our busy lives but the health benefits alone make it worthwhile

There is a big difference between taking a break from work and taking a holiday. As we now know, taking a real holiday can do wonders for your happiness and state of mind but simply staying at home and not going to work just doesn’t cut the mustard.

You need to find a space separate from work in which to relax and restore your well-being. Studies show new surroundings can be especially useful for this. So travelling, even to somewhere local, is a great fix for stress, but be sure not to take your work (stress) with you!

Travel's Health Benefits

Expedia’s 2015 “vacation deprivation” study shows that AUSTRALIANS are amongst the least likely to take their full amount of annual leave and relax away from work.

6 reasons to go and pack that suitcase!

1.) Physical restoration – Quite often we can find ourselves stressed and worn out, but by taking regular short breaks away from home, it gives our bodies the space they need to recover and repair. Making time in our schedule to have a break, is just as important, if not more so, than most of our other scheduled tasks.

2.) Mental restoration – taking regular short breaks builds emotional resilience to cope with the inevitable oncoming pressures of life. Often an insurmountable task or challenge seems to recalibrate itself into an achievable task when we take time away to rest and re-evaluate the situation.

3.) Exposure to Vitamin D – many of us in our everyday lives don’t find the time to go outdoors. This poses a significant risk to our health in terms of vitamin D deficiency. Vitamin D is made when we are exposed to sunlight and is an important factor in ensuring strong bones. It is also thought to have other functions including in prevention of cancer, multiple sclerosis, and various other illnesses. Holidays give us an opportunity to catch up on our sunlight exposure and hence boost our vitamin D stores.
4.) Increased Physical Activity – holidays often give us an opportunity to be more physically active. Whether it is trying a new sport, walking ten kilometres a day while sightseeing, taking a walk along the beach with our dog or just having the time to ride our bikes with the kids. Any physical activity has enormous physical and mental health benefits.

5.) Laughter – often by taking a short break we find that our guards come down and we have the space to be ourselves again. This often means the return of some joy and laughter into our lives. These two ingredients are imperative to build strong mental health. It is thought that ten ‘belly laughs’ per day are needed to realise the health benefits of laughter.

6.) You could also prevent a heart attack – Last but certainly not least! It has been proven that NOT taking holidays can increase your stress, anxiety, and give you higher blood pressure. All of these factors combined can lead to fatal or chronic heart problems. The old saying “stress’ll kill you” isn’t just a truism – it’s really true!

Travel's Health Benefits

So in a nutshell… Take a break before YOU break.

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