Central Coast

Dear Jon: Jet lag can be largely avoided

Holiday traveler seeks advice

DEAR JON - Whether you're traveling home after the holidays or embarking on a new journey across time zones, playing catch-up with your body clock is tough. Molly emailed me and asks, "Dear Jon, help! I'm jet lagged. What can I do about it?" My source tells me when you travel by air, it can take one day to recover for every time zone that you pass through.

So if you fly from New York to California, that's three time zones. From San Francisco to London, that's eight time zones. Whether its three or eight time zones, that is some serious jet lag. Here's some advice that I received from Joan and Lydia Wilen, who are known for the everyday suggestions to life's challenges.

If you want to get over jet lag quicker, as soon as you board the plane, pretend it's whatever time it actually is at your destination. In other words, if you board the plane at 6 p.m. here in California and you're headed for Madrid, Spain, where it's 3 a.m., pull down your window shade, make it as dark as possible and try to go to sleep.

If you board a plane late at night and it's already daylight at your destination, force yourself to stay awake during the flight. Making believe that you're already in the new time zone at the very start of your trip should help you acclimate more quickly.

This seems like common sense, but you have to be disciplined and do some clock watching to get the timing right.

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