This post about how to prevent jet lag is sponsored by Natrol but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
One of the things my husband loves about his job is the opportunity to travel overseas once or twice a year. He has visited some amazing places, from the rice paddies of Thailand to his ancestor’s land of Germany. He always enjoys the unique food and interesting people in these faraway lands. What he does NOT enjoy, however, is the jet lag that accompanies international travel. Our internal clock gets thrown all out of whack when we travel half way across the world. How to you ‘reset’ that clock as quickly as possible? Sleeping pills have never been something he is interested in taking so we look for other solutions. If you are trying to figure out how to prevent jet lag on your own long distance trips, here are a few things we have tried for him:
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How to Prevent Jet Lag without Using Sleeping Pills
Choose overnight flights: Overnight flights interrupt your schedule much less than one that occurs during peak ‘active’ times. Depending on your destination, you will arrive where you need to be sometime in the morning or afternoon. Try to stay awake for as long as possible once you get there and then go to bed at a slightly earlier than normal time. This will make it easier for you to reset your internal clock.
Try to sleep in flight: This isn’t always easy to do. Sleeping on a plane isn’t all that comfortable. Try to avoid alcohol and caffeine during the flight, both of which are stimulants. Dress in comfortable clothes and bring a travel pillow and/or blanket. Bring an eye cover and earplugs to help deaden your senses to the people around you. Avoid taking sleeping pills, which may leave you groggy when you wake up and lessen your body’s ability to adjust to the new time zone.
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Get outside: Once you arrive at your destination, try to go outside in the sun. It will help remind your body that it is daytime, not time to go to bed for the night!
Stay hydrated: On the days leading up to your trip, as well as during the flight itself, work hard at staying hydrated. Dehydration is actually a big cause of jet lag symptoms. The airplane cabin air is particularly dry and makes dehydration much more of a problem. Avoid alcohol and caffeine, both of which increase dehydration.
Try melatonin: Consider taking non-prescription melatonin for your jet lag symptoms. It helps reset your internal clock. Take it prior to bedtime for several days once you reach your destination to help ease the transition. It is non-habit forming, unlike traditional sleeping pills. You wake up refreshed in the morning without that ‘sleep hangover’ that you get from many sleeping pills.
If you are wondering how to prevent jet lag, melatonin has really worked well for my husband. It is a convenient way to promote healthy sleep when your internal clock needs readjusting due to travel. Natrol makes two varieties of melatonin supplements, depending on your personal needs.
Natrol Fast Dissolve is perfect for on-the-go types and requires no water to take. It can be taken anywhere, anytime. Natrol Advanced Sleep offers the maximum strength and its 2-layer controlled release tablet provides an initial 5mg dosage to help fall asleep fast, and then releases the remaining 5mg over time to help you sleep through the night. This is perfect if you find that staying asleep all night is a big problem for you. Both are 100% vegetarian and help support healthy sleep habits.
I hope these tips on how to prevent jet lag help you enjoy your international travels and adjust your internal clock for healthier sleep!
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Diane has a Bachelor’s degree in Microbiology with a Minor in Health Management and Policy. She spent many years working in cancer research, academics, and biotechnology. Concern over the growing incidence of human disease and the birth of her children led her to begin living a more natural life. She quickly realized that the information she was learning along the way could be beneficial to many others and started blogging as a way to share this knowledge with others. While passionate about health and the environment she can’t quite give up her favorite Cheetos and Diet Coke! Learn more about her HERE.