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Taking a vacation at least once a year can benefit your overall mental and physical health

Now that people are getting vaccinated against COVID-19, many are getting out and about and...
Now that people are getting vaccinated against COVID-19, many are getting out and about and traveling.(Storyblocks)
Published: Jul. 9, 2021 at 5:48 AM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Believe it or not, there are some legit health benefits to taking a vacation. Traveling is good for your overall physical and mental health.

KSLA’s Adria Goins asked Dr. Cara Permenter with CHRISTUS Shreveport-Bossier just how beneficial travel can be.

”There is a big link to actually being able to disconnect from daily life and daily grind and what that means for our cardiovascular health and what that means for our mental health. We obviously know the benefit to our mental health. We decrease burnout rates and we keep ourselves in a better mental space, but a lot of people don’t know that missing vacation, even missing your vacation for a year, can increase heart disease,” said Dr. Permenter.

“Most mental health practitioners will try to teach patients in their counseling practices how to build better work life balance so that you can sustain the benefits of the vacation and the stress reduction and carry that through, because it’s obviously not as practical to stay on vacation when you’re stressed out. But how do you benefit from a vacation and then carry with that the benefit of being able to relax, being able to get recharged, actually get proper sleep and proper nutrition and physical activity and being outside in the sun?” the doctor said.

“Doing those things in a balance even when you’re not on vacation may help and provide the same benefits of taking a scheduled vacation. A lot of people will say, ‘I’m too busy for a vacation.’ I would tell those people you’ll spend more money in the future paying for medical bills and for cardiologists. For the people who took at least a seven-day vacation twice a year, for women, eight times reduction in heart disease and in men, a five times reduction in heart disease. Women actually benefited more from taking a vacation,” Dr. Permenter said.

Dr. Permenter says consider the old saying: an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but instead, a vacation a year keeps the doctor away.

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