Jet lag is sometimes an unavoidable inconvenience when traveling. Since we often don’t have a lot of time at our destination, it’s important to make the most of every moment. Don’t let jet lag force you to take time away from your travel adventures.
But thankfully there are things you can do to prepare for your trip and avoid jet lag. Thomas Cook has put together a great infographic on how jet lag affects your body, and several tips on how to avoid it.
1. A few days before your trip, start going to bed later if you are traveling West, or earlier if you are traveling East.
2. Wear sunglasses as much as possible to control your exposure to light.
3. Plan a stopover on your trip to help your body adjust to different time zones.
4. Stress makes jet lag worse, so make every effort to stay relaxed and de-stress.
5. Adjust your meals a few days before your trip, and try to schedule meals according to the time zone you are traveling to.
6. Try to avoid sleep aides, which will prevent your body from adjusting.
7. Drink lots of water and avoid alcohol and caffeine.
8. Invest in a good pair of ear plugs and light blocking eye mask if you need to sleep on the plane.
9. Try to stay active by stretching and walking around the cabin every so often.
10. When you arrive at your destination, try to spend a good amount of time outdoors to help you adjust faster.
11. When traveling West, try to get more morning light.
12. When traveling East, try to get more afternoon light.
13. Try to get at least 4 hours of sleep through the night in the new time zone.
14. If you are on a trip shorter than 4 days, stay on your regular eating and sleeping schedule according to home time if possible.
15. Take short naps to recover lost sleep.