Taking vacations could prolong life

Vacations can be a good way to relieve stress.


A 40-year long study by the European Society of Cardiology suggests that taking a vacation could prolong your life.

The investigation included 1,222 moderately aged male officials conceived in 1919 to 1934 and enrolled into the Helsinki Businessmen Study in 1974 and 1975. Members had no less than one hazard factor for cardiovascular diseases (smoking, hypertension, elevated cholesterol, lifted triglycerides, glucose bigotry, overweight).

Scientists randomized participants into two groups: a control group (610 men) or an intervention group (612 men) for five years. The intervention group got oral and written guidance at regular intervals to do an aerobic physical activity, eat a healthy diet,  accomplish a healthy weight, and quit smoking.

At the point when health advice was not successful, men in the intervention group additionally got drugs prescribed around then to lower blood pressure(beta-blockers and diuretics) and lipids (clofibrate and probucol). Men in the control group received usual healthcare and were not seen by the investigators.

Professor Timo Strandberg, of the University of Helsinki, Finland said, “Don’t think to have an otherwise healthy lifestyle will compensate for working too hard and not taking holidays. Vacations can be a good way to relieve stress.”

As previously reported, the risk of cardiovascular disease was reduced by 46% in the intervention group compared to the control group by the end of the trial. However, at the 15-year follow-up in 1989 there had been more deaths in the intervention group than in the control group.

he analysis presented today extended the mortality follow-up to 40 years (2014) using national death registers and examined previously unreported baseline data on amounts of work, sleep, and vacation. The researchers found that the death rate was consistently higher in the intervention group compared to the control group until 2004. Death rates were the same in both groups between 2004 and 2014.

Shorter vacations were related to excess deaths in the intervention group. In the intervention group, men who took three weeks or less annual vacation had a 37% greater chance of dying in 1974 to 2004 than those who took more than three weeks.

Professor Strandberg said: “The harm caused by the intensive lifestyle regime was concentrated in a subgroup of men with shorter yearly vacation time. In our study, men with shorter vacations worked more and slept less than those who took longer vacations. This stressful lifestyle may have overruled any benefit of the intervention. We think the intervention itself may also have had an adverse psychological effect on these men by adding stress to their lives.”

“Stress management was not part of preventive medicine in the 1970s but is now recommended for individuals with, or at risk of, cardiovascular disease.6 In addition, more effective drugs are now available to lower lipids (statins) and blood pressure (angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, angiotensin receptor blockers, calcium channel.”

“Our results do not indicate that health education is harmful. Rather, they suggest that stress reduction is an essential part of programmes aimed at reducing the risk of cardiovascular disease. Lifestyle advice should be wisely combined with modern drug treatment to prevent cardiovascular events in high-risk individuals.”

The study presented today at ESC Congress and accepted for publication in The Journal of Nutrition, Health & Aging.

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