One of the downsides of flying long-haul is jet lag. You can't beat time-zone tiredness as the body seeks to adjust to a new location.
It's that element that disrupts the natural programming of the body over a 24-hour period.
The circadian rhythms - built-in routines - as they are known get wasted when we decide to enter different time-zones. It can cause loss of sleep, memory and appetite issues, and anxiety.
Best ways to counter jet lag
For the Wise Traveller, here are some tricks, tips and advice on some of the best - and unusual - ways to beat jet lag, or at least minimise it as much as you can.
1. Sleep before you fly
One of the best ways to head into a long flight is to have gotten some decent shut-eye before getting away on your travels. Having a decent night's sleep will help your body cope with the flight ahead and any potential jet lag issues.
2. Multiple stopovers
Rather than face a single long flight, have you considered breaking it up into a multi-stopover. This will help your body prepare for the new routine. There could also be a minor spin-off of saving on the cost of your flight.
3. Lay off the alcohol
As much as it is tempting to indulge before and during the flight, it would help to refrain from taking on too much alcohol as it can dehydrate the body, causing extra tiredness, and then at your new location, jet-lag will set in.
4. Avoid pills and caffeine
Sleeping pills used to help you sleep on your flight will only delay your body's recovery from jet lag. And loading up with free coffee will mean caffeine kicking around your body which will act as a stimulant to keep you awake - and complicate your chances of having a good rest. Both will also slow down the recovery of jet-lag.
By doing simple exercises during the flight, you will be helping boost your body's endorphins and also reducing the chances of muscle cramps. None of the exercises has to be intrusive, but they will also keep the body in good working order and circulation flowing.
6. Run to the sun
Which inevitably means seeking out more sunlight as this will boost the immune system and the overall feeling of well-being. Dosing up on light will make you feel more energized and relaxed.
7. Swallow a supplement
Scientists have been looking into jet lag and its effects for as long as it has been known. While there are many supplements on offer that promise a lot, one of the best to help you recover naturally from jet lag is melatonin. Small doses of melatonin will help move the circadian system.
8. Drink water
Rehydrating the body through drinking lots of water is a sure-fire way of keeping your system in sync.
9. Go business class
As daft as it sounds, and probably expensive for some, having the opportunity to stretch and thoroughly relax without being in confined economy class, as well as having the little luxuries that are afforded to those in business class, will help you de-stress and tackle that jet lag head on.
10. Adapting before you go
These ideas can range from changing your sleep routine before departure and sleeping at the correct times for your new location.
Jet Lag Conclusion
Whichever way you do it to beat jet lag, these tips will surely help the Wise Traveller have a solid start to their new location and minimise the body's shock to a new routine. Happy travelling!
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Andy Probert left the British rat race after a 25 year journalist and PR specialist to live in Turkey and now Cyprus, a compulsive traveller his favourite places include Vietnam and India among many. Among the travel Andy continues to write freelance and still maintains a PR client base.