Fasting to Beat Jet Lag

Discussion in 'General Discussion | Travel' started by Sagy, Mar 5, 2012.  |  Print Topic

  1. Sagy

    Sagy Gold Member

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    I got this from a relative

    Steve Hendricks, writing for Harper’s:

    The Argonne Anti–Jet-Lag diet, as the putative antidote is known, was devised in the 1980s by the late Charles Ehret, a “chronobiologist” at the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois who discovered that our biological clocks are cued in part by when and how much we eat. After experimenting on protozoa, rats, and his eight children, Ehret recommended that the international traveler, in the several days before his flight, alternate days of feasting with days of very light eating. Come the flight, the traveler would nibble sparsely until eating a big breakfast at about 7:30 a.m. in his new time zone — no matter that it was still 1:30 a.m. in the old time zone or that the airline wasn’t serving breakfast until 10:00 a.m. His reward would be little or no jet lag.

    Research at Harvard suggests you can get the same results by simply fasting for 12-16 hours.
     
  2. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    I heard from a pretty prominent sleep researcher recently that forcing the meals to the right new time zone is a very productive way of getting past jet lag. He didn't mention the fasting component.

    Interestingly, I would guess this relies on a set schedule in the previous location, which isn't always the case for me.
     
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  3. chaz4449

    chaz4449 Silver Member

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    Don't show the airlines this data. They would use this evidence to promote fasting amongst passengers on long haul flights.
     
  4. Sagy

    Sagy Gold Member

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    Sounds like a very similar idea only doing it before you get the new location. the 12 "fast" is just the making the Dinner - Breakfast time period somewhat longer.
     
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  5. Sweet Willie
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    Sweet Willie Gold Member

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    Looks like if I'm flying to Western Europe from Central US, I'll need to have my last meal ~noon, then fast/fly until the next morning. Whoa that would be tough to do:eek:
     
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  6. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    My next Europe trip includes an LAX-LHR, in biz, for my first time. So I'll need to not eat at all on the plane. And that's when I finally might get some edible food that I didn't bring.

    I guess I can just eat right away, and then fast until breakfast in London. It's not the complete prescription, but it should help some.
     
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  7. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    I tried this ages ago, probably when it was first announced in the 1908s. I remember that it just made me feel very grouchy before the flight.
     
  8. Sagy

    Sagy Gold Member

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    :oops:

    Was that with the Wright brothers ;)
     
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  9. General_Flyer
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    General_Flyer Gold Member

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    Isn't that why airlines times meal in accordance with their arrival time? At least on SQ, CX, NH, and such, their long-haul meal service is always 2 hours after departure, mid-way, and 2 hours before landing. Maybe it has something to do with this?

    I find it hard-pressed not to eat the meals they serve onboard, especially when I can have the entire menu.. :D
     
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  10. schnitzel
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    schnitzel Gold Member

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    I wish it were that thoughtful and considerate, but if it's always 2 hours after departure and 2 hours before landing, that would mean they could only operate flights at the same one time every day, no? Couldn't have a morning and an evening flight, for example.
     
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  11. MSPeconomist
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    MSPeconomist Gold Member

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    My buddies!
     
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  12. General_Flyer
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    General_Flyer Gold Member

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    Not necessarily. since the pattern is the same. The +- 2 hours after departure and before landing would probably apply to all departure hours, although in my case, it always depends on the airlines.

    I've generally followed the regular pattern the airlines used in timing their meals, and I don't think it really impacts me other than the fact that when we eat too much, we can't necessarily have enough sleep or will be difficult for us to sleep since the food we ingested needs time to be processed.

    Just as an example, I usually fly the midnight flight out of SFO which will arrive in the morning in HKG and in the early afternoon in SIN. SQ and CX gives out meals 2 hours after departure and that's around 2AM local time, but 5/6 PM in HKG. 2 hours before arrivals means around 3-4 AM HKG time. On SQ, 2 hours or so hours after departure from HKG is breakfast. Which is around 9-10 in the morning.

    On the afternoon SQ flight out of LAX which arrives in the evening in NRT, and early morning in SIN. Late lunch/early dinner begins at around 4:30-5:30 PM, 2 hours after departure which is around 7:30-8:30 PM Japanese time. 2 hours before arrival in NRT which usually translates about 3:30-4:30 PM Japanese time, another meal is served. 1 to 2 hours after departure from NRT to SIN, dinner is served at around 8-9 PM Japanese time or 6-7 PM SIN time.

    On a recent morning departure on NH (11:00 AM Japanese time), from NRT to JFK, lunch is served at around 12:00 to 13:00 Japanese time, which translates to around 10-11 PM Eastern Time. Breakfast is usually served around 8 AM Eastern time and arrival is around 10:00 AM.
     
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  13. xristopher

    xristopher Active Member

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    On the contrary airlines like to feed passengers as a means of distraction, after all they know how boring some of the flights can be - especially if the entertainment is dodgy! ;-)
     

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