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How to stay healthy while on vacation | Travel Smart

Health and wellness expert, Nora Tobin, shares tips on how to stay physically and mentally healthy on vacation in this week's Travel Smart.

PENNSYLVANIA, USA — Traveling is a great way to relax and recharge. However, vacations can also cause stress and affect our overall mental and physical health. Making a few lifestyle changes before, during, and after your vacation can improve your overall well-being.

Nora Tobin, health and wellness expert, recognizes the ways travel can be taxing on our mental and physical health.

“Wellness is not all or nothing, you can make these great changes without sacrificing," she said. "Where we can see a detriment to our immunity and our well-being, especially for business travelers who are constantly on-the-go and constantly in air travel and really not in a normal everyday routine; we can see it show up in different ways, from our stress to sleep, to overall immunity, and energy. 

She shares tips on how to care for your physical and mental health while enjoying your vacation.  

First, breathing exercises to relieve stress. 

“The reason why it is so effective is it can take us out of that stress response state and into the parasympathetic, calm, relaxed state." Tobin said. 

Second, covering excess lights in your room to get quality sleep. 

“That light can be emitted into the eyes without even knowing it when your eyes are closed, and that can supercharge your system and not allow you to go into deep stages of sleep, so just putting on dark tape over the light or covering it with a towel will greatly help," she said. 

Third, pack snacks with antioxidants. 

“I like to pack dark chocolate, walnuts, berries...for the plane," Tobin said. "I pack my coffee, things that are going to be rich in antioxidants, delivering those powerful nutrients but without having to go search for them when you’re traveling.” 

Lastly, make sure to get out and move your body. 

“Just know that 10 to 20 minutes of any kind of exercise is going to allow the body to increase its metabolic rate, burn fat more efficiently, and burn calories 24 hours after the workout," she said. "Interval training is one of the best ways to effectively supercharge your system when you’re on the road and also burn fat without taking too much time.” 

Tobin also encourages people to turn off the phone notifications while on vacation. 

“It is such an incredible service to yourself," she said. "Just because the constant tinging and ringing from your phone or notifications is going to create a stress response even if it is something simple."

Vacations are meant to be enjoyed, Tobin said, and it is important to focus on a healthy lifestyle even when you’re away.  

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