In this modern day world we are lucky to be able to travel the world in record time. We can hop on a transcontinental flight and travel to the other side of the world in the same amount of time that, one hundred years ago, it took a train to travel from New York to Chicago. While convenient, these long flights have negative side effects on the body. Jet lag, blood clots, swollen legs, or even a cold or the flu, are some things we can expect to happen to the body on a flight lasting up to 18 hours. Flight attendants can work these types of flights on a regular basis, and many airlines train their flight attendants on how to quickly and efficiently recover from these long draining flights. These are the secrets you can use to quickly recover from your next transcontinental flight. 

When get settled in at home, or your hotel, elevate your feet for five to ten minutes. Lay with your back flat and raise your feet against a wall, or the headboard and keep them there for at least five minutes. This will relieve the swelling in your legs and ankles. Exercising shortly after you arrive will also get the blood flowing to your swollen extremities. Even a few minutes of yoga will increase your mental alertness and acuity and go a long way in helping to regulate your sleep cycle. 

When you arrive at your destination resist the temptation to go right to sleep. It is best if you can stay up until a normal bed time, to give your body a chance to adjust to the local time. If you must nap take a quick one, no more than an hour. A nap of longer than an hour will just make you more tired. When you do go to bed don’t sleep in. Sleeping for an extended period of time will undo all the work you did in staying awake in the first place. Set your alarm for a reasonable hour, even if you are a little sluggish waking up earlier is better for your body in the long run. 

When you depart the plane flush your nose with saline solution. Flushing out your nasal cavity with a saline solution will wash out dust and germ carrying particles that were accumulated during the flight. Get some fresh air. The air on an airplane is lower in oxygen levels, which help to make you feel fatigued. Taking a walk in the fresh air as soon as you are able after your flight will help to get the oxygen flowing and wake up your brain. If you are traveling between time zones you should load up on carbs. The high levels of insulin found in carbs have been shown to help your body adjust to a new eating and sleeping schedule.