Jet Lag is an unfortunate inconvenience. Our minds and bodies are still operating according to the time and schedule of our departure point, but we must adapt to the time and schedule of our destination. Out internal and external clocks must synchronize.
We can usually get a general adaption to jet lag at the rate of about 90 minutes per day. So a 3 hour time difference means 2 day to adapt; 6 hours means 4 days to adapt. But this is not complete adaption – jet lag can have residual effects for up to a month.
Some points that help:
Exposure to light will wake us up, especially if it is Sunlight or blue light (i.e. digital device screens). Use this to your advantage. Expose yourself to morning sunlight at your destination (not just you face, arms and legs). Avoid sunlight in the evening and before bed.
Find out the time difference of your destination and start adapting to this several days before you leave. You can alter your body clock about 90 minutes each day. Move you wake up time 90 minutes per day, and your sleep time by the same amount.
Food and Fasting
Some travellers will fast while traveling and start eating regular meals when they arrive at their destination. Other travellers find this difficult.
Eat the most healthy options possible and stay hydrated on the plane. Avoid alcohol, Caffeine and carbonated drinks.
If you have an exercise schedule at home you should carry it over to the new time zone. Meaning that those who exercise at 8 am every day should continue to exercise at 8 am in their new time zone. Else, early morning exercise seems to help even it isn’t your regular habit.
This is prescription only in Australia, but as it is fairly safe most doctors will allow it. Melatonin helps us to sleep at night and to wake at the first sign of light. It is a naturally occurring chemical in our bodies.
Take about an hour before bed. Anything from 0.5 to 5 mg seems fine.