4 Health Benefits of Taking a Vacation
Many people don't take vacations often enough. We’re so used to being on the go or scared to take time away that taking a break may fall by the wayside. But there are many health benefits of taking a vacation from reduced levels of stress, increased productivity, better sleep and weight loss. So, a summer break just might be your perfect prescription for health!
Here are 4 health benefits of taking a vacation:
1. Reduced levels of stress
I'm sure this comes as no surprise to you. Taking a break from the daily grind of our lives gives us time to reset and refresh and return better equipped to manage our everyday commitments with more ease.
Research shows that a quality vacation can lead to the experience of fewer stressful days at least five weeks later. One study showed that a four-day "long weekend" vacation had positive effects on well-being, recovery, strain, and perceived stress for as long as 45 days. While the reduction in strain was greater for those who spent the vacation away from home, the other effects were similar for those who stayed home.
2. Increased Productivity
Some of you may think, how am I being productive if I'm away? Well, you are actually more productive and creative when you allow yourself to rest.
According to researcher Mark Rosekind of Alertness Solutions, the respite effect of a vacation can increase performance by 80%. Research shows that far from being a brake on performance, vacations actually increase productivity. Humans are simply more productive when rested.
3. Weight Loss
You may not equate a vacation with weight loss, but when you experience reduced levels of stress, you can release weight more easily. When you have increased levels of stress, the stress hormone cortisol rises, making it more difficult to lose weight.
Cortisol stimulates your fat and carbohydrate metabolism and it also increases your appetite. Higher cortisol levels can cause cravings for sweet, fatty and salty foods.
4. Better sleep
Have you ever noticed that you sleep better on a vacation? When we're on vacation we tend to spend more time doing activities we enjoy and leisurely enjoying the day. We are simply slowing down. We may also move away from caffeine and junk food which helps with better rest too.
These are 4 health benefits of taking a vacation. If time away is not something you feel you can do this summer, there are many ways to take a break. Consider a staycation, a local weekend getaway at the shore or in nature, or a weekend break from technology.
Whatever it is you choose to do, just make sure you give yourself time to relax and enjoy.
To your health & happiness,