What do you think of when you hear the word “travel”? Leisure, margaritas, lying on a beach, hanging out on a boat, taking breathtaking photos, etc.? Well, did you know that travel can be incredibly healthy too? This article outlines four reasons why traveling can be a great way to keep your brain young.
1. It Increases Neural Connections
Studies have shown that older people who spice things up or challenge themselves helps to maintain cognitive function. The brain gets bored when not challenged, and just like muscles, need to be exercised to stay fit.
Maintaining a healthy mind is essential as you age. Getting key nutrients through a high-quality diet and brain health supplements is very important, but that’s not enough. Science has shown that people over the age of 65 have a more robust neural network when they include novelty into their lives. Some examples include taking classes, meeting new people, playing strategy games, traveling and learning new languages.
A big part of this is also getting out of your comfort zone. If you haven’t been to Oman yet, maybe it’s time to start an online visa application for Oman adventurous, you can climb mountains, go trekking or camping, and you can dive or snorkel, Oman is a melting pot of cultures with many distinct cultures. Research shows that those who are open to new experiences, like visiting a country with a different culture and meeting the locals or participating in traditional customs, maintain their memory. It also supports creativity and cognitive flexibility.
2. It Reduces Stress
Taking a vacation from your busy lifestyle has long been known to reduce stress, leading to significantly improved mental and physical wellbeing.
And there is a direct connection between cardiovascular health and mental resilience. Studies have shown that those with better heart health have overall healthy lives and are able to maintain necessary body functions.
Studies have shown that as you age, your ability to cope with high-stress situations and emotional overwhelm decreases. So it’s very important to keep your stress in check in whatever way you can.
3. It Increases Exercise
It will ultimately be up to you whether you decide to engage in physical activities on your trip or not. However, visiting new places will usually make you want to explore and see as much of the location as possible.
Without even trying, you may find yourself walking 10-20,000 steps each day as you look around. You could also choose to go on a hike to see the natural surroundings, bike around the city, swim in the lake or ocean, or take a yoga class on the beach. All of these are great for your physical health and are easy ways to maintain and support neural connections as well.
4. It Puts Your Life Into Perspective
Anyone, regardless of age, can benefit from seeing a different culture because it helps put your own life into perspective. On one hand, you can take a step back to reflect on your lifestyle, goals and values, which a busy, nonstop lifestyle makes it hard to do. And on the other, depending on the country you visit, you may be able to recognize the simple privileges you have and develop gratitude for them.
Being grateful is a beneficial way to maintain levels of happiness and contentment. Studies have even linked gratitude practices with lowered stress and supported healthy mental states.
Your brain can change. Just because you have reached a certain age does not mean that you are predetermined to develop certain conditions. You get to choose what your future looks like and what happens to your brain down the line.