jet lag


Jet lag can be significantly challenging due to the misalignment of our internal clock with a new time zone. Understanding your "temperature minimum," which is when your body temperature is lowest, typically in the early morning hours, can help manage and adjust your circadian rhythm during travel. Here are some key points and strategies mentioned by regarding jet lag:

  1. Staying on Schedule: Attempt to maintain consistent work shifts or sleep schedules when traveling to mitigate the effects of jet lag. Swinging between day and night shifts can intensify the strain on your brain and body 1.

  2. Light Exposure: Exposing yourself to light at strategic times can help reset your circadian clock. Ideally, exposure should occur in the morning hours in the new time zone to help advance your sleep cycle. Viewing light during the "circadian dead zone" (late morning until evening) might not aid in adjusting your clock 2.

  3. Red Light Utilization: For minimal disruption of the sleep cycle and cortisol rhythms when awake during night times, using red light can be beneficial. This is particularly useful when changing sleep schedules drastically 1.

  4. Exercise and Meal Timing: Engaging in exercise and eating meals according to the new local time can aid in advancing or delaying your circadian clock, depending on the requirement. These activities should be timed around your temperature minimum for the best effect 2.

  5. Caffeine and Naps: While traveling, particularly flying east, you can use caffeine judiciously and take short naps to cope with tiredness during the adjustment period. This can help manage daytime sleepiness until the body clock adjusts 3.

    Shift Work & Jet Lag

    Andrew shares tips for shift workers and those dealing with jet lag, including staying on the same shift for two weeks at a time and using red light to stay awake without disrupting cortisol rhythms. He also discusses the benefits of becoming a morning person and how to do so using the temperature minimum.

    Huberman Lab

    Sleep Toolkit: Tools for Optimizing Sleep & Sleep-Wake Timing | Huberman Lab Podcast #84

Understanding and using these mechanisms can mitigate the harsh effects of jet lag, though individual experiences may vary.