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Focus on Physiology  April 2017
iWorx Systems, Inc.
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Focus on Physiology  April 2017

Focus on Physiology
August 2017

Featured Experiment

Are Vacations Really Necessary?

From all that we have heard in the news lately about stress induced diseases, anxiety, and depression, one wonders if there really is way to reduce all that negativity in one’s life. It has been shown that taking a vacation can help. Vacations are not a luxury, they have been shown to be a necessity for a well-balanced, healthy life.

Here are a few reasons why:


  • Can Relieve Stress: It is known that stress leads to physiological responses originally meant to help us and keep us safe. Stress releases hormones such as cortisol and epinephrine for the fight or flight response. Chronic stress can be destructive to our bodies. Getting away for vacation and leaving everyday stresses actually gives your body a break from the constant high levels of these hormones and a chance to repair some of the damage.
  • Help Maintain Focus: Studies find chronic stress can affect the part of the brain that inhibits goal-directed activities and can cause problems with memory. Continuous work can lead to increased distraction and problems concentrating. Surveys show that people who vacation feel energized and more ready to tackle day-to-day issues.
  • Make You More Productive: It has been shown that more vacation time for workers increases company productivity and has been found to decrease the number of sick days taken. Workers report feeling more creative after taking time off, have better work quality, and feel more satisfied with their jobs when they took vacations.
  • Improve Quality of Sleep: People who take vacations and travel regularly reported an almost 20% improvement in their sleep. While on vacation, they averaged an hour more of quality sleep, which even carried over to when they returned home.
  • Can Keep You Young: Chronic stress is also believed to accelerate biologic aging and the aging process. Researchers measured the length of DNA sections called telomeres, and found that individuals with the most job stress had the shortest telomeres. When telomeres become too short, the cells can die or become damaged. Those who did not experience work exhaustion had longer telomeres. Telomere shortening has been linked to Parkinson’s, type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Using the iWorx system, you can test whether a “vacation” can reduce the impact of stress. By looking at a series of stress-inducing images or performing a stressful task, you can simulate that feeling in your subjects. Then have them look at and visualize relaxing, vacation-type images: a day at the beach, a lovely sunset, etc….

Does it work? See for yourself.

Download the Lab

View Lab (.pdf)

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New England ACSM 
October 19-20,2017
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Providence, RI

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November 11-15, 2017
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