Friday, February 03, 2006

Jet lag - seek the light

British Airways has a jet-lag calculator that asks you a few questions about your sleep patterns, the nature of the time-zone changes that you will be making, and gives you recommendations. Here's the recommendation for a good sleeper going from U.S. West coast to East coast.
Our recommendations

Day 1
Avoid light between 6:00 am to 8:30 am
Seek light between 8:30 am to 11:00 am

Seeking light

The advisor has suggested the optimum time to expose yourself to light. Light is important because it is one of the primary cues that the body clock uses to maintain its link with the outside world.

When it comes to seeking light, any kind of light will do. Daylight is best, but if it's not available, simply switching on a bedroom light is sufficient to help you minimise the effects of jet lag.

Avoiding light

Avoidance of light at certain times is also an important cue to the body clock to help you recover more swiftly from the effects of crossing time zones.

Avoiding light can be achieved by drawing the blinds or curtains in the room you are in, or wearing an eye mask. If there's nothing else you can do, then simply wearing dark glasses will help.

Meals and exercise

In addition, adjusting your exercise and main meal times to your new time zone will help to synchronise your body clock sooner.

Looks useful. For more extreme time-zone shifts, they give more days of seeking and avoiding light.

(Image of eclipse from


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