Entries in Vacation (4)


Juicing While Traveling: Hotels Offer Juice-Themed Vacations

iStockphoto/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Michelle Barna is a social media marketer who considers herself a "casual" juicer.

"I was eating badly," she said, "I needed to give my system a break."

So she bought a juicer. She owns a machine, does a one-day cleanse weekly and a three-day cleanse roughly once every month.

While Barna may be able to live without her juicer for a few days, there are plenty of people who'd prefer not, and the hotel industry has taken notice. Several properties around the country are now offering juice-themed vacations for the die-hards and juicing bars for the more casual.

"If you feel stressed out, fatigued, and sickly, or if you are always thirsty and eating uncontrollably, guess what? Your body needs a vacation," said Mina Gough, spa director of The Standard Spa, Miami Beach, Fla. "And that's precisely what a juice cleanse is for."

For the first time this summer, The Standard Spa offers juice and wellness programs. There are three- and five-day packages. Both include spa treatments, coaching workshops and a daily supply of juices. The remaining summer dates are Aug. 17-19 and Sept. 14-16 for the three-day package; and Aug. 13-17 and Sept. 24-28 for the five-day package.

"Hotels have taken notice that their travelers, especially those that spend time in the spa, are looking to keep their bodies healthy on the road," said Linden Schaffer, director of Pravassa, a travel company site that organizes wellness-based vacations. "These clients are not interested in spending time and money detoxing in the spa only to fill up on unhealthy, processed food."

At The Shore Hotel in Santa Monica, Calif., the bikini jumpstart package includes a one-day cleanse with juices delivered from the local favorite, Pressed Juicery. The package is available through Aug. 31.

In Santa Barbara, Calif., the Four Seasons The Biltmore opened an organic juice bar called Fins last month. Guests can create their own juice from kale, beets, ginger, celery and an assortment of other fruits and vegetables.

The new Travaasa Austin, a destination resort and spa, offers a class in juicing for its guests. Called Juicing 2.0, the class is designed to make juicing easier for those who've been overwhelmed by all the chopping.

"Juice bars have been a mainstay in gyms throughout the U.S., and with hotels offering juice bar options it's letting clients stay on a healthy path even if they don't have time to spend in the gym while they travel," said Schaffer.

While places like Miami and the California coast may be predictable places for juicing to be popular, juice bars are also popping up in one place more known for debauchery than wellness: Las Vegas. The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino's Juice Bar offers healthy juices and smoothies, but in typical Vegas fashion, lets guests add alcohol.

As for Barna, she's leaving for a vacation on St. John this week. She hadn't heard about the hotel juicing trend before our conversation, but was intrigued. As she was about to hang up the phone she said, "I'm going to go online right now and see if the hotel has a juice bar."

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Vacations Improve Health but Americans Skip Them 

Steve Mason/Digital Vision(WASHINGTON) -- Vacations have long been touted as one of the best remedies for improving stress and overall well-being, but not all Americans take them.

Inside Science reports that taking time off is necessary for maintaining good physical and mental health.

"Rest, relaxation, and stress reduction are very important for people's well-being and health. This can be accomplished through daily activities, such as exercise and meditation, but vacation is an important part of this as well," said primary care physician Natasha Withers from One Medical Group in New York.

Withers found that those who took time off had a decreased risk of heart disease and an improved reaction time.

Psychologists also prescribe vacations to help ease the mind. 

"The impact that taking a vacation has on one's mental health is profound," said Francine Lederer, a clinical psychologist in Los Angeles who specializes in stress and relationship management. "Most people have better life perspective and are more motivated to achieve their goals after a vacation, even if it is a 24-hour time-out."

But not all Americans are so lucky.

In a survey about vacation time in 2010, conducted by the online travel agency Expedia, the average American reported having 18 vacation days, and only using 14 of them.

In a culture that prides itself on hard work, Americans are more inclined to work better if they decompress every so often.

The Expedia survey revealed that 45 percent of Americans agreed "they come back to work feeling rested, rejuvenated, and reconnected to their personal life" after vacation, and 35 percent said "they return from vacation feeling better about their job and feeling more productive."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Going to the Beach? Pack Your...Meat Tenderizer?

David De Lossy/Photodisc(BREVARD COUNTY, Fla.) -- Depending on which beach you're visiting, you might want to carry some vinegar or meat tenderizer, just in case you get into a tete-a-tentacles with jellyfish.

Vinegar was the solution of choice this Memorial Day weekend when about 800 stings were reported at Florida beaches, primarily Cape Canaveral and Cocoa Beach.

Eisen Witcher, Brevard County's assistant ocean lifeguard chief, said that strong, east onshore winds had pushed the jellyfish toward the beaches.  Most people were stung on their ankles, arms and torsos, Witcher said, and there were two cases of allergic reaction in which people had to be transported to a hospital for respiratory issues.

Witcher offered these tips for treating stings:

  • Get out of the water and check respirations. People react to stings differently.
  • Watch for swelling.
  • Rinse area with vinegar solution or a meat tenderizer.
  • Scrape away tentacle or residual stingers.
  • And about that whole "urine cures jellyfish stings" myth: Witcher advised against it because urine actually carries a low ammonia content, which won't reduce pain as effectively as the other remedies.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Social Jet Lag Phenomenon Causes Post-Holiday Sluggishness

Photo Courtesy - Getty Images(MIAMI) -- Even if you didn't travel long distances during the holiday season, you may return to work feeling as if you did. British researchers use the term "social jet lag" to describe the mental and physical weariness people experience after days or weeks of irregular sleeping, eating and stress that experts say is similar to the travel jet lag that affects people who travel across time zones.

"Whenever we have a few days off, we have a tendency to go to sleep past our regular bed times and wake up later," said Dr. Salim Dib, assistant professor of neurology and sleep disorders at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine. "That messes up our circadian rhythm and makes it difficult to get up at our normal time in the morning."

There are many reasons sleep experts say the holidays can wreak havoc on the body's built-in clock. In addition to getting less sleep because of social obligations, family visits or shopping, other seasonal factors play a role in disrupting sleep patterns.

"The holidays relate to doing things that are out of the ordinary, such as drinking more alcohol, eating fattier foods and more stress in general," said Dr. Nancy Collop, director of the Emory Sleep Center in Atlanta. "There may be more reflux and other things that are not good for sleep."

Fortunately, experts say, this phenomenon is temporary, but there are things people can do to facilitate a return to sleep normalcy. People suffering from social jet lag should focus on waking up at their normal time in the morning, even if it takes longer than usual to fall asleep and people get less sleep.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio