Top Ways to Prevent and Minimize Jetlag
One of the pesky after-affects of travel is the dreaded JETLAG. It’s the feeling that you’ll never sleep past 3am again, that you’ll never adjust to local time, that you’ll ruin all of your vacation plans by being drowsy and feeling lousy.
But it doesn’t have to be that way! There are very practical and easy ways to prevent and minimize jetlag from occurring and if you do start to feel the repercussions of your rapid journey across multiple time zones, there are ways to minimize the affects.
The week before your trip, get plenty of sleep, eat well and avoid situations where you might pick something up. Contracting a cold before you leave home is just bad news! Consider moving your bed time one hour each day for a few days to prepare for the earlier or later wake up time at your destination.
Some travelers find it useful to take melatonin supplements starting a week before departure, one to two hours before bedtime. It may help your body adjust to changes in your sleeping schedule.
Eat Carbohydrates. A new study shows that the release of insulin may help with re-establishing your internal clock. Eat a carb-heavy dinner when traveling eastward and a carb-heavy breakfast when heading westward.
Don’t stay up late the night before your flight. Starting out with a deficit is a terrible idea. Make sure you pack well in advance and not stressed out. Relax, clear your mind, get plenty of sleep.
Take a supplement like JetlagFX that is scientifically formulated to ease the affects of jetlag and reduces the mental and physical stress of traveling.
Sleep on the plane, but only if it’s an overnight flight or you’re arriving at your destination in the morning. If you sleep on a daytime flight and get there in the evening, or you don’t sleep on an overnight flight that arrives in the morning, you’re setting yourself up for major jet lag.
Drink enough water to stay hydrated, but not so much that you interrupt your sleep with bathroom breaks.
Take a sleep aid when you board the plane. We like Benedryl because it’s not as long lasting. Melatonin is another option. Avoid taking anything if your flight is less than 10 hours.
While At Your Destination
When you arrive, avoid the desire to nap and get right into your itinerary. Don’t take a nap in the afternoon either! When you’re sleep deprived, it’s tempting to take a nap, but even a short nap can disrupt your ability to acclimate to the new time.
Stay up until a reasonable bedtime. If you can only make it until 8pm, that’s fine. It’s better than napping.
Drink plenty of water. This is one of the hardest to follow for me because I’m always avoiding drinking tap water in other countries, but to avoid jet lag, it’s important to stay hydrated, so buy a couple of large bottles of water for your hotel room and drink up.
Get plenty of sunlight. Daytime light and sun can help diminish the feeling of being tired and weary, so get outside as much as possible.