Seagulls flying, kids splashing, skin tanning, waves crashing, cold drinks, minds relaxing. What’s more to love about the beach? For many decades, the beach has always been a place where families go to make memories, where people escape to for quiet moments and where friends take vacations. Our beautiful coasts already give us so much. But, in case you needed more convincing to jet off on your next beach vacay, we’ve found these scientifically-proven health benefits of the beach that’ll be sure to get you planning your next trip ASAP!
1. The sound of waves help relax your brain
There’s a reason why there are tons of ocean audio recordings made for lulling us to sleep or meditation. The sound is widely known to create a calming and peaceful state of mind. But, we’re pretty sure we don’t need scientific explanation to convince us of this! From the moment you dig your toes in the sand and shut everything off in your brain and just listen to the waves, it’s instant relaxation. An associate professor from Pennsylvania State University associates this soothing sound as “non-threatening,” which our brains can easily interpret, allowing us to block everything else out and relax.
2. Walking in the sand burns more calories
Every time you go to the beach, there’s almost always someone who’s running down the shore with their headphones in. And I’m sure you’ve also noticed how much more difficult it is to walk through the sand than on normal flat ground. According to LiveStrong, the more uneven the surface you’re running on, the more energy and calories that you burn with each step–almost 1.6 times more! Sounds good to us!
3. It’s a natural source of Vitamin D
As many of you know, the sun is a great natural source of vitamin D–an essential vitamin that boosts your calcium levels to maintain healthy bones. So, when you’re exposed to the sun for some time, your body produces vitamin D from cholesterol. According to Mayo Clinic, vitamin D has been used to help prevent certain cancers, osteoporosis and it can even improve cognitive health. However, Healthline reports that nearly half of U.S. adults have a vitamin D deficiency–symptoms range from fatigue to hair loss to even depression. Low on vitamin D? Head to the beach!
4. Sand and saltwater are naturally good for your skin
Ah, one of our personal favorite benefits of the beach. Have you ever noticed that your store-bought exfoliants have a similar texture to sand? Or that there are tons of hair and skin products that are labeled sea salt spray for the skin, beach waves spray for hair or sea salt baths? That’s because they’re mimicking the effects that the beach naturally gives us. The sand acts as a natural exfoliant for our skin, which helps cleanse our pores and wipe away dead skin. Magnesium in the ocean is what helps moisturize our skin, while the potassium chloride helps heal cuts and other wounds.
5. The beach can help boost your immune system
The beach isn’t only great for your mind, but it’s great for boosting your immune system, too! For those who work in an office environment, or teachers in a classroom full of kids, having a strong immune system is vital. We already know that the sun gives us vitamin D, but taking a swim in the salty ocean water increases your red and white blood cell counts (from five to 20 percent) to help fight off infections and other viruses. The ocean–which, contains magnesium, potassium and iodine– has also been known to help people with anemia and high blood sugar.
6. You’ll be much more productive in the days and weeks following a beach vacay
No matter how much you enjoy your job, sometimes you just need a break to clear your mind and feel rejuvenated. The Boston Consulting Group did a study on the productivity of people in various careers, and found that those who took frequent vacation time throughout the year were much more productive, overall, than those who didn’t take the time. And what better place to take time off than at the beach, where the atmosphere is as calm and rejuvenating as it gets?
7. You’ll have the best sleep of your life after a day at the beach
Have you ever noticed how sleepy you get or how well you sleep after spending a day at the beach? Well, believe it or not, swimming in the ocean, walking in the sand and soaking up the sun is actually the perfect combination that makes a natural remedy for insomnia. While you’re splashing around in the warm saltwater, your skin is absorbing magnesium, which is an essential mineral to calm your nervous and muscular systems. Increasing magnesium levels, even a little bit, has been linked to helping with insomnia. This may be one of our favorite benefits of the beach!
So, now that you have scientific evidence to support your wanderlust for a beach vacay, are you ready to start planning your next trip? Because we are! Check out some of these gorgeous resorts to jet off to on your next break.