Overcome Jet Lag By Skipping A Couple Of Meals

Overcome Jet Lag By Skipping a Couple of Meals

Jet lag can be completely debilitating, and it may take you days to recover. Rather than struggling with fatigue, you might find you can reset your body clock just by missing out on a meal or two.

A study (linked below) by Dr Clifford Saper of Harvard University suggests that animals have two internal clocks. One of these is tuned to sunlight, so we tend to sleep when it is dark and wake when it is light. The other clock is tuned to availability of food. When we are hungry, our bodies will keep us awake to try to make us seek out food.

If animals have access to food only during their normal sleep cycle, they will shift most of their circadian rhythms to match the food availability.

You can exploit this to help beat jet lag in advance. Fast for 12 to 16 hours to reset your food-led body clock. When you eat next, your body will believe it is breakfast time and you can start afresh. Plan ahead for your next trip, and you can hack your body into waking up when you need to.

Differential Rescue of Light- and Food-Entrainable Circadian Rhythms [Science Magazine via WonderHowTo]

Picture: Maglara


Comments

    With most airlines these days you wouldn't want to eat on the flight anyway, unless travelling business or first class.

    Skipping meals.........why is the cure for things never "eat half a dozen cupcakes"??

      If I understand the research correctly, the optimum strategy would be to fast for 12 - 16 hours, then eat half a dozen cupcakes for breakfast.

Join the discussion!