Airlines Working to Eliminate Jet Lag

August 24, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

Wouldn’t it be wonderful if Elon Musk’s Hyperloop train existed right now, and could travel from New York to LA in 45 minutes? We would never experience any of the ill effects of time zone travel. While jet lag still exists because the Hyperloop doesn’t, airlines and science are looking for some natural ways to help your body prepare for the adjustment to your new locale and reduce jet lag symptoms.

This prompted Fast Company to ask whether we’re on the verge of eliminating jet lag. Short answer, no. But we may be getting closer.

For one thing, airlines that offer long haul and international flights have begun experimenting with LED lighting in the cabin to mimic the time zone destination of the flight.

Sleeping on a plane can help with jet lag, but only if done at the right time.“It turns out you can pretty heavily manipulate levels of melatonin in the body by exposing people to different wavelengths of light,” David Cosenza told Fast Company. He’s a project manager for Lumileds, a company that manufacturers the LED lights that are now used in the new Airbus A380 XWB and the Boeing 787 Dreamliner.

While you may have no control over the light you’re exposed to as you fly, you can prepare your body using one essential oil and a supplement. Rosemary oil, either applied to the skin or added by the drop to a bottle of water, relieves cramping and nausea, promotes digestion, aids circulation, boosts the immune system, and eases respiratory systems working with recycled plane air.

Also, consuming turmeric — in tea, as a supplement, or as an ingredient in your meals — will help you avoid headaches when flying. Its powerful anti-inflammatory agents require some planning, though, so begin incorporating it into your diet up to three days in advance of your travel.

Speaking of your diet, consider choosing lean protein if you want to remain awake once you reach your destination. Turkey, chicken, and fish satiate and provide extended release energy, which will help you transition to your new time zone. Avoiding fatty foods, which induce sleep, is key. Alcohol and caffeine actually inhibit restorative sleep, so choose water or an herbal tea throughout the course of your travel so that there’s nothing to block your body’s natural circadian rhythm.

These natural methods of curbing jet lag will have you alert and ready to go when you reach your destination.

How do you beat jet lag? Do you have any tips or tricks? Share them with us in the comments below, on our Facebook page, or in our Twitter stream.

Photo credit: Ian MacKenzie (Flickr, Creative Commons)

Five Tips to Help You Sleep on a Plane

March 16, 2016 by · Leave a Comment 

No, sleeping and being on a plane are not diametrically opposed. You can do it if you know a few simple tricks. We learned a few of them in an Entrepreneur.com article on airport survival.

Apple In-ear headphones + Virgin eyemask = a good sleep.

Apple In-ear headphones + Virgin eyemask = a good sleep.

First, choose your side of the plane. I know this sounds a bit strange, but according to Heather Poole, a veteran flight attendant and author of the book, Attitude: Tales of Crashpads, Crew Drama, and Crazy Passengers at 35,000 Feet, it’s based on simple logic. “Get a window seat for night flights. If you sleep on your right side at home go for the right side of the plane,” Poole told Entrepreneur.

Next, dress comfortably. You can carry on your suit or whatever you’re wearing to your meeting in a garment bag and change into it when you arrive. Don’t even think about attempting to change into something more comfortable while in your seat. According to Poole, she has seen it all, including passengers arriving on the plane in adult footed pajamas. Talk about the walk of shame!

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How To Beat Jet Lag

December 8, 2010 by · Leave a Comment 

After all the anticipation and effort, you’ve finally reached your destination. And, guess who’s there to greet you?

Mr. Jet Lag.

When you travel across multiple time zones, your body’s internal clock is not in sync with the destination time zone. Thus, your daily sleep and wakefulness rhythms are out of whack, resulting in sluggishness and diminished performance.

So, what’s a long distance or international traveler to do? Whether you’re on business or a dream vacation, you want to be at your best, regardless of the time zone. Here are a few tips:

1. Get plenty of exercise and rest prior to your flight, while maintaining a nutritious diet. Plus, make sure you’re well hydrated. The healthier you are, the less jet lag will affect you.

2. Most experts agree that it takes one day for your body to adjust for each time zone traveled. Take steps to minimize jet lag, factoring in the direction you’re traveling:

  • West – Just prior to your departure, get up one hour later and go to bed one hour later for as many days as time zones you’ll be crossing. Granted, this may not be possible for long trips such as international travel.
  • East  – Use the opposite technique – Getting up one hour earlier and going to bed one hour earlier.

3. Since sunlight significantly affects your body clock, control your light exposure before you travel:

  • West – Avoid sunlight in the morning, and get it in the late afternoon and evening.
  • East – Get sunlight in the morning, and avoid light in the evening as much as possible.
  • If it’s overcast, simulate the sun’s effects with a light therapy box.
  • Wear sunglasses if you have to be in sunlight when you should avoid it.

4. During travel, regardless of the direction, be sure to:

  • Drink plenty of water, while avoiding large meals, alcohol and caffeine.
  • Move around the cabin regularly to promote circulation in both the body and brain.
  • Wear comfortable clothing.
  • Sleep, if possible. If you have difficulty sleeping on flights, consider taking a sleep aid (though we recommend consulting your physician first).

5. Upon arrival:

  • Avoid critical decision-making in the first day (if at all possible).
  • Adapt to the local schedule immediately, eating meals and going to bed at the appropriate times .
  • Get as much sunlight as you can.

None of us has time for jet lag. But, if you take to time to properly prepare, jet lag’s time is up.

How To Get Sleep On Long Flights

December 6, 2010 by · 1 Comment 

Are you one of the many of long distance fliers who has trouble sleeping on planes?

Your seatmate is out like a light before the plane even takes off, while you sit wide awake hour after hour. So, what do you do?

First, recognize that when you travel across multiple time zones, your body’s internal clock gets out of sync. This can effect your daily sleep and wakefulness rhythms, resulting in sluggishness and diminished performance. There are definite advantages to sleeping on long flights. Here are a few tips:

1. Get plenty of exercise and rest prior to your flight and maintain a nutritious diet. The healthier you feel, the better you’ll be able to sleep.

2. If you have difficulty sleeping on flights, consider taking a sleep aid (though we recommend consulting your physician first).

3. When flying be sure to:

  • Drink plenty of water, while avoiding large meals, alcohol and caffeine.
  • Move around the cabin periodically to promote circulation in both the body and brain.
  • Wear comfortable clothing.

4. If you can’t sleep, sit quietly with your eyes closed. While you won’t get the all the benefits of a good night’s sleep, you will be somewhat rested.

May we also suggest Austin House’s line of Travel Comfort Essentials? Austin House, a leading brand of travel accessories, features a variety of items ideal for long distance travelers in need of rest:

  • Super Soft Blanket – Simply remove the “2 in 1” blanket and pillow set from the pouch, inflate the pillow and use the pouch as your pillow case
  • Inflatable Lower Back Support Pillow – Supports the lumbar region, reducing discomfort.
  • Inflatable Neck Pillow – Supports the neck, easing fatigue.
  • Ear Plugs With Carry Case – Reduce surrounding noise for a more restful sleep.
  • Eye Shade And Ear Plugs – For a light and sound-free rest.
  • Inflatable Velour Neck Pillow & Eye Shades – Super-soft pillow supports head while eye shades reduce light.
  • Pressure-Less Earplanes – These specially designed ear plugs relieve air pressure during take-offs and landing, which can lead to sleeplessness.

Whether you’re traveling on business or for pleasure, you don’t want to be groggy when you reach your destination. With a little planning and common sense, you can arrive well rested.