Whether you’re just starting out on an adventure or returning from a dream trip, nothing puts a damper on your pre- and post-vacation glow quite like jet lag. And, while there are many products out there that claim to kick it to the curb—a sleep-tracking app, a magical drink, a freezing cold ice-chamber—finding the remedies that actually work can be a bit dizzying.
So, what rids travelers of that debilitating fatigue? Turns out there isn’t a quick fix. But, we did some digging, and found seven ways to get you looking and feeling fabulous in (almost) no time.
Travel + Leisure: How to Beat Jet Lag
1. Get Some Vitamin D and B
Vitamin B-12 is a natural way to keep your body alert and energized, without the shaky side effects of energy drinks. Vitamin D, natural or supplemental, are related to the melatonin levels in your body—a hormone that helps get your body ready for sleep. So get out and soak up some sun (with sunscreen on, of course.)
2. Avoid Caffeine and Alcohol
While your first instinct when you’re feeling exhausted is to head to the nearest coffee house, the smartest thing you can do is resist. Not only are both these substances stimulants, but they also dehydrate you—making your jet lag worse.
Travel + Leisure: Avoiding Jet Lag: There’s An App For That
Long flights can leave you stiff, tired and extremely dehydrated. Drink plenty of water before, during and after your trip to alleviate your jet lag symptoms, fast.
4. Find Your Light
This may be the most effective way to combat your fatigue. Jet lag happens when your circadian rhythm is thrown off, making you feel tired. Manipulating your light exposure can help reset it. Limit the amount of artificial light (yes, this is full permission to wear your sunglass inside) and increase the amount of natural light your body is exposed to. Natural light not only gives you vitamin D but it’s what your body’s clock adjusts to. Heading East? Look out for that morning sun. Heading West? The afternoon sun is all you need.
5. Stretch it Out
Traveling can be stressful and stress can make the effects of jet lag even worse. A quick yoga session can help you relax and get things moving again—including your energy level. From your hotel room, or your living room, follow these tips for doing yoga anywhere.
6. Grab a Juice
The burst of nutrients will help refresh and re-hydrate. Bonus: it will give your immune system a boost too—goodbye, airplane germs.
7. Take Melatonin
Taking some of this natural hormone supplement a half hour before sleep can assist you in sticking to your current time zone’s schedule.