Preventing Jet Lag

December 20th, 2013 by The JetSetter Team | 2 Comments »

Slide1If you’ve ever flown outside the country (or across it) you’ve probably experienced the sensation know as jet lag. The experience is the result of quickly traveling from east to west or west to east and affects passengers by altering the circadian rhythms of the body. Basically, it is the term assigned to the feelings of fatigue and insomnia one experiences when the time zone changes and hours are lost—a concept that can be grasped by the mind but not the body.

Our bodies keeping track of time via a biological clock that follows a 24 hour cycle, waking us up like a natural alarm clock by alerting us to hunger, thirst, and sleepiness. This same part of the brain (the hypothalamus) also regulates temperature, blood pressure, hormones, and glucose, allowing the body to recognize the passage of time. The eye and the brain work against each other when traveling, causing jet lag.

As someone who has done his fair share of traveling, Jason Hartman is no stranger to feelings of jet lag. Unfortunately, if you’re traveling for business, you hardly have time to accommodate this temporary feeling of illness. But jet lag can last up to five days, providing a travel experience that is unpleasant in many ways. To minimize the jet lag you feel, keep these tips in mind:

• Exercise: if exercise is part of your daily life, you’ll be less likely to succumb to jet lag. Try and get a workout in before and after takeoff, and you’ll probably find yourself feeling better during your trip. During your flight, get up and walk around a few times to keep your blood flowing and improve your circulation.

• Change your schedule: try adjusting your sleep schedule a few days before you plan to travel so that it is a little bit easier to make the transition. If possible, maintain that sleep schedule even on the plane.

• Avoid alcohol and caffeine: while it might be fun to have a drink on the plane, alcohol dehydrates you and makes you feel worse in the long run. Caffeine does the same thing, while keeping you up past your bedtime.

• Drink water: water is always good for you, but especially when you’re in the dry atmosphere of an airplane. It’s easy to get dehydrated when you travel, so bring a water bottle on board and drink up! Bonus—you’ll move around more in your walks to the bathroom!

While there’s no way to completely eliminate the annoyance that is jet lag, you’ll feel better if you follow these simple (and free!) suggestions. Enjoy your flight and, better still, your journey! (http://www.flickr.com/photos/pmiaki/4435889383/)

 

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