One of my friends recently wrote a post about how Travel Is Not Healthy. While he makes some good points, I completely disagree. The health benefits of traveling far exceed the bad habits that some travelers succumb to. Here are 5 ways travel makes you healthier.
Travel Is Not Healthy
Before I get into the 5 ways travel makes you healthier, let me recap the reason why Jim from The Jetsetter’s Homestead believes that travel is not healthy.
- Eating the wrong foods because they are convenient
- Eating at the wrong time of day due to flight times and excursions
- Stress makes bad habit even worse
Jim shares some steps he’s taken to offset these bad habits. And I encourage you to read about them because they are easy to implement and can make a big impact on your overall health.
Now, let me share with you the 5 ways travel makes you healthier.
Travel Reduces Stress
Travel can be stressful is many different ways. Your flight is delayed or canceled. The hotel lost your reservation. Tickets are sold out to your favorite activity. Work continues to call and email you as if you were still in the office. Etc, etc, etc.
And then there is the jet lag, which can affect your sleep patterns. Here are some common myths about jet lag and how to fight them. While you’re at it, find a great hotel bed to help you get a good night’s sleep.
Even after factoring in these minor problems, travel reduces stress on the whole. You get away from the office. You’re not thinking about the chores or unfinished projects at home. And no new bills are showing up in the mail while you’re away from the house.
The Global Coalition on Aging found that “after being on vacation for only a day or two, 89 percent of people are able to leave the stressors of work behind and relax.” I know that if I’ve been on a really relaxing vacation, I literally forget my work computer password.
You Walk Way More Than At Home
Whenever possible while traveling, we avoid renting a car. We use public transportation or Uber & Lyft to see more of the city and to encourage walking. And while we walk, we get to explore more hidden treasures of the destination than if we were driving since we’d be focused on the road or have trouble finding parking if we spotted something interesting.
During my trip to Stockholm with Timmy, we walked an average of 7 miles a day. Thanks to my Fitbit watch, I am able to track my steps.
And while Anna and I went to Italy, we walked an average of 15,000 steps every day.
Spending Quality Time With Family
You Breath More Fresh Air
One of the things I love most about traveling is being out in the fresh air as we explore. I’m a white collar worker sitting in an office or conference room 8-14 hours a day, every day. So I relish the opportunity to breath fresh air and soak up some sun walking around a city or countryside. Even better when I get to snowboard in the crisp mountain air!
Reduce Your Risk of Disease
According to the Global Coalition on Aging, traveling is proven to reduce the risk of heart disease. Here are a few of their findings:
- One study found that women who vacationed every six years or less had a significantly higher risk of developing a heart attack or coronary death compared to women who vacationed at least twice a year.
- Another study showed that men who did not take an annual vacation had a 20 percent higher risk of death and 30 percent greater risk of death from heart disease.
You don’t have to convince me to take more vacations, but these findings should open the eyes of anyone who doesn’t use all of their vacation days each year. As our motto says, travel more so you can live better.
The Bald Thoughts
When you travel, it is a great opportunity to reduce your stress and improve your health. Yes, there may be frustrating moments when everything doesn’t go according to plan, but remain flexible and enjoy the journey. You and your family will be better off from the positives resulting from travel. And this is the most important part of our motto — Live Better. Because it’s just not worth it if that’s not the end result.