Thursday, December 18, 2008

ProTravel Tip: Avoiding Jet-Lag

Dear Travel Guru,

My whole family is taking a trip to Hawaii this spring, but I am really worried about jet lag going and coming. Do you have any tips or tricks that will help all my family members adjust to the time zones changes?

Brianna G. New York to Hawaii!

Dear Brianna,

A Hawaii trip will be a lot of fun--but it can be rough dealing with the time zone changes for sure! Mentally and physically, travelling long distances can take a toll. Frequent travelers have all sorts of tips and tricks for avoiding jet lag, or at least making the adjustment as easy as possible, and saving those precious hours for vacation fun, and certainly here at ProTravel Gear... we have tried them all!

The first thing to know is "the why"... jet lag occurs when your body’s biological clock does not correspond with local time. Essentially we all become in-tune with the time where we live because of sleep patterns and sunshine. When you travel across time zones, you confuse your body and it wants to "re-boot."

Jet lag sufferers report feelings of insomnia, irritability, headaches and dizziness, sore muscles, loss of appetite and stomach and indigestion problems. And none of this is any fun, so if you can lessen the affects, you will be a much happier vacationer!

Jet lag varies depending on the duration of the flight, the time zones crossed and the overall health and fatigue of a person’s body.

One way to ease jet lag is to choose flights that correspond to local time, and leave as much time in the day at the destination as possible, so you can walk around and enjoy the day light. This will help that internal clock.

There is no one sure way to cure jet lag, but travelers can try a few different strategies to help overcome jet lag, including getting plenty of sleep before your trip, adjusting your eating patterns in the days prior to the flight and getting plenty of rest on the flight. Never underestimate the power of a nap!

Limit the amount of caffeine and alcohol you consume during the flight, opting instead for juice and water so you stay hydrated. And avoid big meals, choosing high protein snacks such as raisins, nuts, granola bars that will help your body recover. There are also some homeopathic jet lag remedies on the market that may work for you.

When you arrive get that natural light if possible, and if you do end up arriving at night local time, try to go to bed--even if you are not really tired. Do what you can to get on a "local" schedule so that any affects of the Jet Lag are nipped in the bud, and you can go enjoy your vacation!

I hope that this helps - enjoy your Hawaii trip!

The Travel Guru
Jet Lag Expert (Seriously!)

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