So THAT’S Why Jet Lag Feels Worse When You Fly East


Jet lag is a dragno matter which guidance you wing. But did you know the experience is typically worse after you’ve traveled east than after you’ve moved west?

Frequent travelers have recognized this result for quite some time. Your body’s internal clock naturally follows a cycle that’s somewhat longer than 24 hours, at about 24.5 hours long. Traveling west across hour regions gives your body the extra hour it naturally craves in a period, while winging east shortens the day and makes it harder to adjust, as the Washington Post explained in 2012. Whoa .

And now, we have even more insight on the science behind plane lag recuperation, thanks to new research in the scientific periodical Chaos.

Scientists from the University of Maryland set out to understand how the cells in your brain’s Suprachiasmatic Nucleus respond to travel, as they’re responsible for controlling your circadian rhythm.

In a new hour zone, “the brain’s … pacemaker cells cannot instantly establish a rhythm appropriate to the new time-zone, ” the researchers explain. They created a mathematical model to better understand how quickly these cells can adjust.

After much modeling( AKA lots of complicated math ), the scientists demonstrated what travelers have known for years as mathematically true: Your brain cells should indeed take longer to adjust after winging east because they naturally tend to follow a cycle that’s about 30 minutes more than 24 hours long, and that 30 -minute difference renders an advantage for cell recuperation if you’re traveling west.

Researchers likewise estimated that it would take about six days removed from a westbound journey across six hour regions, but about eight days removed from an eastbound journey across the same number of hour regions. This means you’ll likely invest about two more days feeling dazed, confused and sleepy after traveling from NYC to Rome than after stimulating your return journey. Yikes.

Keep in intellect these are simply the scientists’ figurings, and they haven’t been tested in experiments yet. But the information is all the more reason to stay hydrated, bring snacks and squeeze in a workout to reduce the plane lag struggle on your next trip.

Happy travelings!

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