You already have one reason to be excited about your upcoming holiday: escaping your annoying boss!
However, did you know that going on holiday also offers a number of health benefits? If you make the effort, the experiences you have while away from home can inspire lifestyle changes when you get back.
1. New and Delicious Foods
According to research from Japan, eating a varied diet is the best way to get all of the recommended vitamins and minerals.
On holiday, you’re more likely to be adventurous. If you like the foods you try, you can continue eating those dishes at home, expanding upon what you already like and enjoying a more varied diet.
2. All of the Additional Sunshine
While excessive tanning can lead to skin cancer, moderate sun exposure is a good thing. It helps the body create vitamin D which is very important for healthy teeth, bones and immunity. It has also been shown to alleviate symptoms of depression.
If you live in an area that gets dark and cloudy during the winter months, you may be suffering from seasonal affective disorder (SAD) and not even know it.
Getting some extra sunlight on holiday might prove to be just what you need to get through the rest of your work year.
3. Plentiful Exercise
Even if you aren’t the type to visit the gym at your all-inclusive hotel, you can still get plenty of exercise on holiday.
If weight loss is one of your goals, check out local hiking trails, swimming spots, and other locations where you can take part in some physical fun. You can also try walking to some of your destinations instead of taking a cab.
Not only will it burn calories, but you’ll also get up close and personal with the local culture, noticing things that you never would have spotted from the car.
4. Extra Sleep
When planning your itinerary, be sure to allow plenty of time to sleep in. Proper sleep is something that most of us don’t get enough of.
Research has shown that sleep can help fight stress, improve mental performance and even strengthen our immune systems. Therefore, you shouldn’t feel guilty about spending the afternoon in the hammock!
5. Exposure to Sea Water
Do you feel soothed when you listen to the ocean? If so, you’re not alone. According to life coach Carole Gaskell, the sound of moving water can alter brain patterns in a positive way, much like meditation.
On top of that, salt water can be very detoxifying, leaving you feel refreshed long after your holiday ends.
6. Laughter and Memories
The time you spend laughing and having fun on holiday will stay in your mind for many years to come. Psychologist Ron Bracey points out that looking back on happy memories releases endorphins, which have been shown to reduce the risk of a variety of health problems, including heart attacks and arthritis.
A study from the University of Maryland found that exposing patients to funny films during the recovery process made them less likely to experience another heart attack.
From embracing a new love of hiking to discovering a tasty new vegetable dish, you can learn things on holiday that will change the rest of your life.
Try to view your holiday as something deeper than a simple break from work. It’s the chance to explore, evaluate and change who you are. We could all use a little reset now and then.