Jet lag: it's that lethargy monster we often forget about when planning trips to any other time zone. Both ends are just as miserable — either you can't keep your eyes open from exhaustion or sweet slumber evades you well into the wee hours of the morning. Jet lag is even more trying when you're traveling for business or have to work on your trip. It's already difficult enough to stare at a computer screen for upwards of eight hours a day; add in tired eyes and it's a recipe for disaster.
In advance of your next flight, we put together an essential travelers survival guide for combatting jet lag. From tips to products that will help you wind down, with these tricks up your sleeve, you can finally kiss jet lag goodbye.
Your journey toward a regular sleep cycle begins way before you reach your final destination. You can start to get yourself in the right mindset while you're still on your flight or in the terminal — it's all about balance. Start your travel day off by choosing an outfit that's going to be comfy and cozy while you're in flight, especially if it's a red eye or more than a few hours — because there's nothing worse than skinny jeans when you're trying to snooze. Pack your own snacks or pick up something healthy in the airport before you board so that when you land, you don't feel bloated (or worse) from the processed airplane food. Give yourself some time on the plane to do a simple meditation such as alternate nostril breathing — this is also a great time to do a hydrating and calming face mask.
The most important thing to remember is to try and minimize your stress throughout your travel day — some things can't be avoided, like delayed flights or traffic on the way to the airport, but you can manage your own reactions to stressful situations. Stress triggers cortisol release in your body, which can lead to trouble sleeping and is the last thing you need when trying to combat jet lag. So don't sweat the small stuff, like someone cutting you in line to board or a cranky airport official. Deep breaths, babe!
A major cause of interruptions in our sleep cycle is blue light. We spend so much time looking at screens, from watching movies on your phone or tablet during the flight to the computer when you're trying to get work done. Blue light throws your circadian rhythm out of whack and suppresses the body's release of melatonin, the hormone that tells your brain it's time to sleep. So grab a pair of blue-light blocking glasses and be sure to wear them anytime you're looking at a screen — they could help with everything from headaches to falling asleep easier. The most important thing, however, is to put away all your screens at least 30 minutes before bedtime so that your body can naturally wind down.
Another way to get yourself in sleep mode is to take some time to do anything that helps soothe and calm you down. If possible, put away your computer, stop working at a normal hour, and let yourself get cozy. If your hotel room has a bath, take a soak before bed — maybe listen to a podcast or read a book (try not to use a screen!). Put on a robe or soft PJs, apply a face mask, do some jade rolling or gua sha, and sip on some decaf hot tea. Indulge in a comforting bedtime snack that isn't going to upset your stomach — try and stay away from anything too heavy or greasy. And 30 minutes before your head finally hits the pillow, eat a yummy vitafusion Max Strength Melatonin to help you drift off to dreamland*.
Melatonin supplements are one of the best ways you can combat the effects of jet lag. It's a natural hormone made by your body's pineal gland, but its release can get messed up when you're traveling between time zones and your internal clock isn't synched. vitafusion Max Strength Melatonin help regulate that sleep/wake cycle that has been thrown out of whack by helping you sleep, so you can wake up refreshed and rested*. Pop two of these delicious strawberry gummies before bed to sleep soundly and kick jet lag to the curb.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.