In a country where we value high productivity, vacations almost seem like a luxury, a distraction from getting the job done. In fact, the average American employee takes only half of her eligible vacation time.
Most people view taking vacations as optional because they are too busy trying to meet the high demands of a corporate job, or avoid criticism from coworkers from spending some time away.
However, science suggests otherwise. Vacations are absolutely necessary to keep you a high-functioning individual in the workplace and a healthy social being.
Here are 4 health reasons why taking a vacation isn’t optional:
1. Boost heart health
A scientific study done on men at high risk for heart disease showed that those who skipped taking vacations for years were 30% more likely to experience a heart attack than those who deliberately took at least a week off every year.
A separate study conducted among women also found that those who took fewer vacations were about 8 times more likely to develop heart problems, were at risk of a heart attack, or die of coronary heart disease.
Take care of your heart health – go take a break!
2. Reduce stress
Research has found that when you’re removed from stressors in the workplace, stress and anxiety levels will drop significantly. This effect even lasts up to 5 weeks after you come back from vacation.
Know the warning signs of extreme stress and don’t hesitate to take a step back to give yourself breathing space and destress.
3. Improve sleep
Stress can take a toll on your sleep quality and not getting enough sleep can leave you less focused. Sleep deprivation has dangerous effects on your health, including impaired memory and increased risk for accidents.
Taking vacations can short-circuit these stress-induced sleep habits and help you improve your night’s sleep.
4. Reduce depression
Scientists conducted a study in Wisconsin among women who vacationed every other year or less and found that they were more likely to suffer from depression and maintained higher stress levels compared to those who took regular vacations each year.
Read the full article by Aurora Healthcare Org. here if you need more convincing to book that plane ticket and take some time off.