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Jet Lag

6 Ways to Ease Jet Lag To Make Your Travels Smoother

| Angela Naff |

With summer break, holidays, and summer in full swing, travel is frequently on people’s to-do list this time of year. While air travel can make things shorter, and sometimes smoother (have you been to an airport lately?) jet lag can be a huge deterrent to for many travelers. We have compiled a list of 8 quick tips to make jet lag lighter or non-existent for your next trip.

Drink water

Long-distance travel may cause dehydration, and you may even reduce water consumption during travel to avoid bathroom breaks. Think again about this choice. Proper hydration may help manage jet lag symptoms and travel fatigue.

Carry an empty water bottle through airport security and fill it up once you’re in the terminal. You can also purchase water in the terminal or request it in-flight. Continue to drink plenty of water upon your arrival.

Light Exposure

Light, especially natural light, has the biggest influence on circadian rhythm. Light from the sun, even on a cloudy day, is a critical signal interpreted by the brain to regulate our internal clock.

Exposure to natural light at your destination speeds up the process of acclimating to the new time zone; however, you may not want to rush outside immediately. Depending on how far you’ve traveled and the time you land, it may be better to avoid light when you first arrive and then have extended light exposure earlier the next day.

Sunlight for Jet Lag
Photo Courtesy of Pixaby

Select flight times strategically

Pick a flight that allows you to arrive in the early evening. This way, staying up until it’s time for bed in your new time zone isn’t as hard. Trying to stay as much as possible in a similar sleep and waking pattern will help eliminate jet lag, or cut is quicker. Obviously, delays and such will impact this but as much as this is in your control it can help significantly.

Eat light meals

Nutritionists recommend eating smaller meals that include protein, complex carbs, fruits, and vegetables. That way, your energy levels will stay steady, instead of rising and crashing. Delish recommends specific foods that serve as jet lag remedies, such as cherries, chicken, and quinoa.

Avoid Alcohol and Caffeine

Reaching for coffee or soda may be our first instinct when we’re tired, but it’s not the best thing to do for our bodies. Similarly, it’s a myth that a cocktail, wine, or beer will help you sleep on a flight to combat jet lag. Sorry to be a buzzkill, but the number one thing anyone can do to avoid or cure their jet lag is to hydrate. The most efficient way of doing this is to, of course, drink water. Avoiding dehydrating beverages like alcohol or caffeine can also help the hydration process. Ordering a cocktail can be one way to relax and make your flight experience a little more luxurious, but try to drink a bottle of water as well to avoid getting too dehydrated.

Over the Counter remedies

If other symptoms of jet lag, such as upset stomach, nausea, and other physical ailments, are a common occurrence, plan ahead. There are several jet lag over-the-counter options, and you should talk to a medical doctor to see which might be able to help alleviate your symptoms for smoother transitions via air travel. Many over the counter options exist that can ensure you cut the side effects before they begin.

Go on and book that dream vacation or family reunion this summer. Making travel painless and enjoyable is vital to get to the good parts of making memories with our trips. Hopefully, one or more of these jet lag tips works for you on your next flight. We are uniquely connected by short connections of an airplane these days, but making those trips enjoyable is vital for our happiness and repeating said excursions.

Happy Travels, Suncoast.

Feature Photo Courtesy of Deposit Photos

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