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Want to get healthy? Take a holiday!

Posted by Medavie Blue Cross

Are you planning to take a staycation this summer? Good for you – and your health!

You actually have science on your side for this one; vacation, no matter where we spend it, has proven benefits for our physical and mental wellbeing.

Health benefits of holidays

Medical research shows that holidays can:

1. Decrease our risk of heart disease

2. Relieve stress

3. Promote physical activity

4. Boost our creativity

5. And, best of all, make us happy

There are studies that show people who regularly take vacations have a lower chance of suffering a heart attack and experiencing depression. Plus, they return to work from their holidays more creative and productive.

So, go ahead – take time off to refuel, recharge and re-energize this summer!

Here are some ways to make full use of your vacation allowance and reap the health benefits.

Staycation ideas

Be a tourist – Staycations allow us to truly appreciate where we live. This summer, be a tourist in your own town and discover all the great things that it has to offer! Make a checklist of all the things you have always wanted to see and do within a two to 200 kilometre radius of your home. There’s never been a better time than now to cross off that list.

Why not have dinner at that restaurant your friends have been raving about? How about a visit to the local gallery or museum to see the latest art or artefacts on display? Think your family might be up a round of mini golf, a game of frisbee and a picnic lunch in a nearby park or a movie, followed by ice cream from your favourite shop?

Explore your neighbourhood – Get some vitamin D and exercise by exploring all the wonderful sights and sounds that surround you just outside your door or a few blocks away. Research the walking paths and trails in your neighbourhood and take a hike or bike ride. You could even set up a tent in your background and create your own mini campground, complete with s’mores, star gazing and ghost stories.

Savour nature – Did someone say road trip? Grab a friend, a camera and go! Capture the natural beauty of your home province. Rent a kayak or canoe. Then spend a peaceful afternoon letting your worries float away on a lazy river or lake.

Practice self-care – You can also disconnect from the world around you and reconnect with yourself and your partner by turning a room in your home into a spa. Create a playlist of relaxing music. Prepare a pot of herbal tea, or tray of sparkling water and a plate of tasty, healthy nibbles. “Google” recipes for face masks. Light candles. Trade massages. Read. Meditate.

Bottom line? Whatever helps you to unplug and unwind, make those activities part of your staycation plan.

Stay safe. Stay healthy and enjoy!

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