We all treasure our vacation time and look forward to that time when we can get away from work. With the arrival of summer comes the prime vacation season and along with it one more reasons to appreciate our vacation time: the value to our heart health. While there has been much anecdotal evidence about the benefits of taking a vacation from work, a new study by Syracuse University professors Bryce Hruska and Brooks Gump and other researchers reveals the benefits of a vacation for our heart health.

“What we found is that people who vacation more frequently in the past 12 months have a lowered risk for metabolic syndrome and metabolic symptoms,” says Bryce Hruska, an assistant professor of public health at Syracuse University’s Falk College of Sport and Human Dynamics. “Metabolic syndrome is a collection of risk factors for cardiovascular disease. If you have more of them you are at higher risk of cardiovascular disease. This is important because we are actually seeing a reduction in the risk for cardiovascular disease the more vacationing a person does. Because metabolic symptoms are modifiable, it means they can change or be eliminated.”

Bottom line: A person can reduce their metabolic symptoms — and therefore their risk of cardiovascular disease — simply by going on vacation.

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