Long haul flights can really disrupt our healthy homeostasis. From messing with our circadian rhythm (jet lag) to dehydration, constipation and bloating, being seated in a compressed chamber for 10+ hours can significantly compromise our health and vitality. BUT, it doesn’t have to. Below are my hacks to minimise the inflammatory effects of long haul travel.
- Set Your Time to Destination. Ideally you should set your watch to the time of your destination on the day you are departing and then adhere to that time in terms of your sleep/wake times. So if it’s midnight where you are but midday at your destination, try to stay awake for a little while longer so that you are sleeping closer to the evening time of your destination. This does a lot to help re-set your circadian rhythm to that of your destination enabling you to suffer way less from jet lag.
- Stay Hydrated. Yes I know going to the loo on a plane is annoying, especially if you have to climb across 4 people to get there but hydration is key to feeling good when you step off the flight. Drink as much as you possibly can, ideally double what you would normally drink. This will minimise inflammation, toxicity and stagnation that occurs when sitting in an airplane for long periods of time.
- Guard Against Bugs. Planes are typically teeming with all sorts of bacteria and most people have experienced coming off a plane to find themselves sick with a bug of some description. You can’t wear a gas mask but you can fortify your immune system in preparation. Use a good quality probiotic in the lead up to your travel (you should probably be taking one daily anyway). On the flight, I like to protect myself with essential oils that have antibacterial properties and work a treat to keep any lurgies at bay. My favourite are Doterra’s On Guard and Oregano Oil. I will be applying a drop of both of these to the soles of my feet regularly throughout the flight.
- Sleep. You all know how much I love to harp on about the importance of sleep. Well on a long haul flight it’s even more essential as being inside a large aircraft is highly stressful to the nervous system. The way to reduce the risk of jet lag, low energy and all the other negative side effects of long haul flying is to get some decent sleep. My favourite supplement to support this L Theanine Serene and of course more essential oils. Here I like Lavender and Cedarwood.
- Eat Minimally and Clean. Most people experience additional digestive distress when they are travelling long distances in planes. Chronic sitting in a stressful environment teamed with inflammatory foods served on the aircraft typically leads to bloating, constipation and a general sense of discomfort. When it comes to a long haul flight, less is more. You are not moving a lot so don’t require huge amounts of food. Travelling is sometimes a good opportunity to give your body a mini “fast” by limiting foods. If you do eat, try to eat gluten and dairy free as this will significantly reduce the likelihood of bloating and gas. Finally, if you can pack your own healthy whole foods to take with you, do so. I will be packing a loaf of my grain free Banana Bread, some low sugar chocolate and also some other healthier snacks to keep me going until we arrive.
I hope these tips help you to manage your health next time you travel long distance. There is nothing better than arriving at your long awaited destination feeling clean and energised ready to enjoy your surroundings. xx