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How To Beat Jet Lag

Zoe Browning life_hacks /
jet lag life hacks
@suedebrooks via Instagram

Summer is right around the corner, and with COVID 19 restrictions getting less harsh you know that means - it's time to go on a getaway trip! A vacation away is always fun, but unfortunately traveling the road also means interacting with different time zones, aka having jet lag. And no one wants to spend half their trip knocked out in the hotel room... right? Well, fortunately, while staying awake may be difficult, there are a few helpful tips and tricks that can get rid of jet lag easier so you can spend more time lounging by the beach or exploring a new city. Here's how.

The reason we feel so exhausted once the plane lands is because our circadian rhythm is out of whack! Our nights turn to days and day into night, making our bodies extremely confused and extremely tired. So what we need to do is realign that circadian cycle. While there is no one magical step to doing this, there are a few things you can try. Some studies have shown that grounding can be an effective method of helping the body regulate the new time zone. Walking barefoot on a grassy area outside or even on the beach will help readjust your cortisol levels - aka, the thing that supports a healthy sleep schedule. It's an easy tip, especially if you are already at a beautiful beachy location!

But if you don't have access to an outside beachfront, another trick is light exposure. The sun is basically in charge of our circadian rhythm, so it makes sense that it can help get it back into order. Getting out under the sunshine of your vacation spot will let your body know, "hey, we're in a new place, it's time to adjust to this time zone." But while this hack may be good if you land in the morning, what should you do if your arrival time is when the moon is out?

traveling hacks jet lag
@emmaleger via Instagram

Each night our body naturally produces a hormone named melatonin. Its job is to make you sleepy while also regulating the circadian rhythm. But thanks to jet lag, the exertion of this hormone may not be regulated during your travel days. Luckily pharmacies sell melanin over the counter (and so does Amazon), so taking the supplement may boost the hormone secretion and help you actually get some Zs. Then you can wake up the next day feeling refreshed and ready to take on a new adventure!