Can jet lag be avoided?

Attracting the attention of Pro QC’s Managing Director, Ed Sanchez, was an article relating to avoiding jet lag.  As a frequent flyer visiting our offices in over thirty countries, it is understandable why!  Also, many of our clients are well aware of jet lag too, frequently visiting factories or operations abroad.

Jet lag (AKA desynchronosis) is described as “extreme tiredness and other physical effects felt by a person after a long flight across several time zones.”  While not everyone suffers from jet lag, it can certainly make travel unpleasant for others.  Interestingly, “the condition is not linked to the length of flight, but to the trans-meridian (west–east) distance traveled. A ten-hour flight from Europe to southern Africa does not cause jet lag, as travel is primarily north–south. A five-hour flight from the east to the west coast of the United States may well result in jet lag.” (Source)

The article forwarded to me by Mr. Sanzhez was interesting.  The recommendations of the blogger, Chris Kilham, a frequent traveler himself, are sound:

  • Start out rested.
  • Get regular exercise.
  • Drink plain water.
  • Drink little or no alcohol.
  • Meditate on flights for at least a few minutes.

In addition, Kilham offers supplement suggestions that include melatonin and ginseng.

The travel editor for TODAY, Peter Greenberg, added the importance of restricting food on the flight.

Molly Ogorzaly, with Travelsmart, offers twelve steps to avoid jet lag.  Suggestions include the importance of moving to avoid DVT and setting your clock to the destination time at the beginning of the flight.

Reaching out to a couple of Pro QC’s key team members that travel often, they shared the following advice:

“Just go through the day.  No matter when you arrive, hold on and sleep with everyone else.  I also believe that frequent overseas travelers can adjust faster than non-frequent overseas travelers.” ~Fernando Rodriguez, Account Manager

“My remedy to jet lag is more or less the same as the one described by Fernando. I usually try to sleep as much as I can on the plane and I immediately adjust to whatever time it is at destination. If I arrive in the early morning spend the whole day without sleeping and if I arrive at night I go to bed at the time I would go to bed back home. In any case, it is best not to sleep before 11:00 pm. I have had the experience to fall asleep around 4:00pm~5:00pm but that has resulted in me being jet lagged for the next 5 days or so and waking up in the middle of the night within able to fall asleep again. Also, as soon as I arrive I follow the local breakfast/lunch dinner pattern. This helps the body adjust faster.” ~Bruno Singier, Sales & Marketing Director (Europe, Middle-East & Asia)

“I do several things to minimize jet lag, including trying to adjust my schedule at least a week in advance, eat and sleep on the destination schedule en route and minimize alcohol consumption.” ~Michael L. Hetzel, VP/Americas

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