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1. Holidays improve your physical and emotional health, which helps you live longer
Back in ancient Rome's late Republican era, it became a habit for the purple-toga set to hop into their thoroughbred-powered chariots and leave the big smoke behind, escaping to palatial Tuscan villas in the cool hills or overlooking the Bay of Naples to bliss out in thermal baths, get slathered in olive oil and let their hair down with lavish feasts and banquets.
As those who didn’t party too hard discovered, time away from the urban routine was refreshing, revitalising and rejuvenating. No surprise then that the Roman concept of getting away from it all soon caught on and would eventually spread across the world. In relatively recent times, scientific research has backed up what we’ve always suspected. Holidays and new experiences aren’t just fun. They’re therapeutic and good for our health and wellbeing.
A 36-page UK study by Nuffield Health and Kuoni Travel has clinically proven that holidays directly benefit our health. If that's the case, shouldn’t we be spending all 365 days of the year on holiday, as part of a healthy lifestyle?
With Azure X’s trailblazing new pick-and-click portfolio of five-star products designed to maximize the quality and frequency of your leisure time, you can now spread the pleasures of healthy holidays and experiences across an entire year, making post-holiday depression a thing of the past.
2. New experiences stimulate your sense of wow, which benefits your mental wellbeing
Chances are high that the science of wonder is the mystery ingredient that inspires everything we do. New experiences trigger a sense of wonder in us. We vividly remember our best holidays. Our first kiss. Our first romantic mountain staycation. These memories are rewards, our brain’s way of reminding us to seek out more. Revitalising yacht cruises in the Med. Supercar road trips, spa treats, country-chic getaways. . . new events and experiences help rewire our brains, boosting mood and self-confidence in the process.
3. Being on holiday with family makes you happiest
‘Being on holiday with the family’ is what 49% of British people surveyed by UK’s Family Holiday Association said was their ‘happiest memory’. With Azure X, you can spend much more quality time with loved ones, with a choice of healthy holidays and experiences perfect for celebrating anniversaries, birthdays, proms or simply spicing up date nights. And a side-effect of these happy times together?
Happiness reduces blood pressure, strengthens the immune system, combats stress, reduces aches and pains, fights disease, disability and lengthens our lives. A happier you, quite simply, is a healthier you.
4. Why you really DO love to be beside the seaside
Recall your last visit to the seaside? Your first glimpse of the sea changed something in you didn’t it? Here’s why seaside breaks are the happiest of all healthy holidays. That first sight of sea, that unending blue or azure colour, psychologically conveys calm. Salty sea air is charged with healthy negative ions, which balance serotonin levels and work as natural antidepressants. Bare feet on sand absorb free ions in the earth’s surface, giving us that tingly ‘grounded’ feeling.
Crashing waves have a positive effect on our mind and mental health in general, initiating a calming meditative state. Sea water contains high levels of magnesium, potassium and iodine, which heals and detoxifies. Swimming in the sea is a physical activity that rejuvenates and exfoliates the skin, is linked to a decrease in anxiety and depression plus burns calories, sheds weight and builds muscle tone.
5. Being out at sea satisfies you on a very deep psychological level
Just being beside the sea makes people healthier, happier, reduces stress and brings us contentment. Being out on the water itself, takes those benefits a step further, tapping into something deep within the human psyche. Picture yourself standing on the deck of a yacht, watching the sun rise over the Aegean or Mediterranean. At once you are Odysseus or Achilles setting off from Ithaca to storm the walls of Troy. You’re Christopher Columbus seeing mystical America for the first time. Julius Caesar marvelling at the white cliffs of Dover. You’re Edward Teach or Anne Bonney under a black flag, wind in your hair, swashbuckling adventure on your mind. Set sail with friends or family gatherings, sing sea shanties, live off healthy food, fruits and vegetables fresh from local markets on shore, visit exotic ports of call and chase the sun across the horizon. Surely this is what life is all about?
6. Heading back into the trees is a magic potion for your mind, body and spirit
‘The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness,’ said John Muir, the Scottish-American Father of The National Parks. Leaving the beaten track behind and heading for the trees offers more than simple escapism. You guessed it, we're talking healthy holidays again, as Scientific research has shown that green spaces can decrease depression by up to 71%. Shinrin-yoku (forest bathing)
is the cornerstone of preventive health care and healing in Japanese medicine. Trees give off a huge capacity of oxygen. Our brain functions better with an increased level of oxygen, releasing serotonin, making you feel happy and lowering your stress level. Fresh air also improves your blood pressure, reduces the risk of heart attack and heart disease, aids digestion of food and boosts the immune system.
With the advent of luxury motorhomes, is now easy to break away from the chaos of city life and enjoy the simplicity of nature in style whatever the season. It's one of the best healthy habits you can have! Head into the Caledonian pine forested mountains of the Scottish Highlands for the ultimate in escapism and one of the best healthy holidays you can find. With no hotels or buildings for miles around, you’ll see stars like you’ve never seen them before and sleep in blissful comfort at night. Wake up at dawn, draw the blinds and watch the morning sun hoist its way up the cliffs and pinnacles of the Cairngorms or pull up beside a mountain stream and cook freshly caught trout over a campfire as the evening sun warms the heather swathed hills into a glowing purple haze.
7. Supercars seriously supercharge your batteries
Scientists at Concordia University assigned 39 young men to drive a Porsche 911 Cabriolet, and then a decrepit Toyota Camry wagon in downtown Montreal. Remarkably, men who drove the Porsche experienced ‘significant and substantial increases in testosterone levels’. Or, like Azure X partner Autoxotica puts it more humorously: ‘supercars make you feel like James Bond, even if you look like James May’.
Interestingly, there’s a rapidly growing number of women (and not just the Kim Kardashian and Nicky Minaj types) who are serious supercar enthusiasts, relishing the feel of supercars – and the way it makes them feel in turn. In addition to the feeling great part, there’s also the adrenalin rush that comes from taking a supercar through its paces on a test track, or how a Ferrari shifts from 0-60mph. The state of heightened experience, high vigilance and euphoria often remains long after you’ve said arrivederci to the Ferrari. Quick sugar rush it is not. Researchers call this afterglow the excitation transfer process, an intensifying of the feel-good feelings you experienced, making you want come back for more. A great way to spice up your date nights and smash any seasonal affective disorder right out of the park.
8. 5-star hotels and resorts make you feel happier
Strange but, fascinatingly, true. For one, if you’re a networker you’ll meet a lot more business people and entrepreneurs in five-star hotels than you will in three and four star equivalents. Great social benefits all round whatever the holiday season. Another perk is 24-hour room service and top resorts’ adaptability to all types of healthy nutritional preferences. This option of healthy eating adds another layer of de-stressing to your stay because, even if you arrive late or just fancy a green smoothie at 4.30am, you know your meal or snack preference will be met.
Gyms and swimming pools come as standard in higher starred hotels and we all know the benefits just a tiny bit of exercise can bring. Spas offering healing treatments and deeply relaxing massages are also routinely found in the higher end hotels and resorts. Then there’s the laundry service, which includes making the bed, changing sheets, providing fresh towels and even tidying up your room and taking out the rubbish, freeing up that most priceless commodity of all – your time. Who could ever have thought, that staying healthy could be this much fun?
With Azure X, you can now access the best holidays and experiences in the world more regularly, making you feel healthier and happier than ever before. Here's to many more happy healthy holidays!