Being a global nomad allows you to travel the world. You’re constantly on the move. Switching from one place to another and switching from one time-zone to another. It can be really exhausting to adapt our biological clocks of our bodies every time we’re on the move. Especially after long hours of flight, we become restless, and it’s more difficult to fall asleep. We all know the inconveniences of jet lag. We’ve gathered 5 tips to make your life a little easier and jet lag a little more bearable.

Limit caffeine intake
Caffeine is the most effective substance when it comes to an energy boost to go through the day. This substance is highly addictive and can be found in coffee, tea and energy drinks. As a business traveller, you’re always on the go, attending different meetings and you are more prone to be exposed to beverages containing caffeine. Always keep track of the caffeine you take in and never consume caffeine 6 hours before going to sleep. The Mayo Clinic states that 400 mg of caffeine a day should be enough for healthy adults. That is roughly 4 cups of coffee,10 cans of cola or 2 energy shot drinks.

Avoid alcohol
One of the most common mistakes we make while travelling is drinking alcohol to relax during the long hours of flight. A survey revealed that 42% of Singaporeans avoid alcohol completely to try to adapt to a new time zone. Drinking also causes dehydration to the body and if we drink too much it may also lead to a hangover. The combination of a hangover with jet lag can be extremely bad especially when you need to be fully functional for meetings the next day. So, avoiding alcohol is the best option to prevent dehydration and hangover on top of jet lag.

Be active
Doing some light bodyweight exercise can help to stretch our muscles to reduce cramp and relaxes your body. The most recommended exercise for better sleep is yoga, where you can practice prior to bedtime or in the morning. Yoga doesn’t require any equipment -just a yoga mat- and you can easily find a video for a yoga tutorial online. The same survey mentioned previously also revealed that 45% of Singaporeans do exercise or take in fresh air before a flight to try to avoid jet lag.

 

Sleep better
Waking up in a different time zone can be really challenging if you didn’t sleep properly. Adjust your sleep schedule to shift your bedtime or awakening time to help your body’s internal clock move closer to your destination’s time zone. Do this ahead of time, at least 3 to 5 days before your trip. If you arrive in the daylight, expose your self to natural sunlight for 15-30 minutes right after you wake up. This helps our body to feel more awake. It is best to avoid taking naps during the day, this will slow down the adaptation of the biological clock. If you really need to take a nap, don’t nap more than 20 minutes. If you arrive in the nighttime, set the stage for a good night’s sleep: dm your lights, eat lightly and do an activity that relaxes you.

Stay hydrated
Spending long hours on a flight can cause serious dehydration, the oxygen and humidity are way lower in the cabin. For example, men can lose up to 2 litres of water on a 10-hour flight and women can lose up to 1.6 litres of water. Our body consists of 70% of water, we need to consume plenty of liquid to stay hydrated. Therefore, it’s highly recommended to drink a glass of water every hour to prevent dehydration. When someone is dehydrated it has a significant impact on the overall health and mood. Which consequently reduces the cognitive functions of the brain and increase tiredness and fatigue.

It’s impossible to completely eliminate jet lag, but this can be reduced following these simple tips. Don’t forget these useful tips for your next trip: Limit caffeine intake, avoid alcohol, be active, sleep better and stay hydrated!

By Yan Yue