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Treat Your Heart to a Vacation, It Needs One

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Feeling burned out and fried at work? Take some vacation days and turn off the stress.

Working hard and not having fun may prove fatal, according to decade-long studies. The researchers proved that people who take regular vacations are generally healthier than people who don’t. They also have lesser risks of getting a heart attack and they tend to have lower stress levels which can lead to depression. This applies for both men and women.

Vacation is your heart’s medication
A research study in the 1940’s called Framingham Heart Study1 questioned about 750 women with no heart disease and monitored their lifestyle for about 20 years to analyze their risk factors for heart attacks. After two decades, they found out that the least frequent vacationers (one vacation in six years) have 50% higher risks of having a heart attack than the most frequent vacationers (two vacations a year). And the difference was higher among stay-at-home moms.

Another study entitled Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial2 verifies that it is also applicable to men. The nine-year study kept records of the health of 12,000 middle aged men who have high risks for heart diseases and asked them the frequency of their vacations in a year. The results showed that men who took at least one vacation a year are 30% less likely to die from chronic heart ailments compared to men who don’t take their time offs.

Both the studies concluded that vacations do a lot of good for the heart and overall health. They figured that this is because it helps reduce stress – one of the biggest heart disease contributors. Having a vacation also increases your physical activities and improves your socialization skills which are also very good for health and well-being.

The beach is where your heart should be
What better place to take that vacation than the beach? Getting the sea air into your system can do a lot of good for you. According to a research3 in the University of California, the sea air contains tons of free electrons that neutralize free radicals in our brain and body. It is full of negative ions that help our body absorb oxygen better. It also balances the serotonin level in our body making us more alert, energized, yet calm and relaxed.

Recharging equals refueling for work
A recent study by C. Fritz and S. Sonnentag4 proved that taking a holiday really boosts energy reserves, giving you renewed fuel to get back to work. In the research, respondents claimed that their self-reported job performance is “slightly higher after a vacation.” This means that productivity in the workplace does not depend on the long hours you’ve worked, but on a refreshed and energized mind.

So this means that after the well-deserved holiday, people feel recharged and return to their work with a happy heart and a more productive spirit.



  1. http://www.framinghamheartstudy.org/
  2. http://www.indiana.edu/~k562/articles/athero/mr fit 1982.pdf
  3. http://www.negativeionsinformation.org/NegativeIonsfortheBrain.html
  4. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16834516