Beating jet lag

JET LAG – it is the bane of travelers everywhere and can put a dampener on even the most exciting plans.

It’s symptoms are myriad and include headaches, fatigue or disturbed sleep, feeling “lost” or disoriented, irritable or depressed and it can wreak havoc on your digestion.

Known in medical circles as desynchronosis, jet lag affects the body’s circadian rhythms because of rapid long-distance flights.

As a rule of thumb, professionals suggest the rate of recovery is one day per time zone crossed – so cross three time zones and that long weekend away could feel like an extended hangover.

Here’s‘s tips for beating jet lag.

  • Try to get a good sleep the night before the flight – this will help compensate for any sleep lost during you flight.
  • Before the flight, relax, perhaps have a shower and make sure you wear comfortable clothes.
  • Avoid the first meal aboard the aircraft and to eat before boarding an overnight flight. A big meal will not help you sleep.
  • Try to adjust eating and sleeping habits to the timezone of your destination.
  • As tempting as as it might be – lay off the booze, alcohol combined with the pressurized cabin can dehydrate, making you feel much worse when you land – water is the best alternative.
  • Take the lighter meal options. Food heavy in carbohydrates or fat can contribute to you feeling sluggish.
  • Try to get to sleep as soon as possible after take-off.
  • While not ideal, if you struggle to sleep, try to take in as many catnaps as possible.
  • If there is a stop-over on your flight consider showering and changing at the airport and take a good walk around the terminal.
  • On arrival try to get some exercise, go for a long walk and try to establish a normal routine as quickly as possible.

While, it is possible you won’t ward off jet lag altogether, the above tips will go a long way towards helping you get the most from your travels.

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