Newly Discovered Gene

Newly Discovered Gene May Hold Key to Curing Jet Lag

Recent medical studies have shown that there is a certain gene within the body that correlates with jet lags whenever our body travels to a different time zone. This specific gene slows down the body’s ability to adapt to a new time zone. It is therefore speculated by several researchers that if we can develop the ability to suppress this gene we can very well have the ability to prevent jet lags.

How Our Internal Clock Ticks

The human body has its own internal clock called the circadian clock that operates on a 24 hour cycle. This internal clock helps keep us subconsciously aware of our sleep and wake cycle based on our natural time zone.

Melatonin Supplements - Health Benefits and Side EffectsThe internal clock or circadian clock reacts to daylight but whenever a person travels to a significantly different time zone the circadian clock is thrown into confusion which results in jet lag. Our internal clock is regulated by a certain part of the brain; this part is known as the Suprachiasmatic Nuclei or SCN. The SCN gathers information fed to it by the eyes which determine whether it is time for the body to rest based on the level of natural light in the environment. Hence, if it is dark then the body starts to slow down readying itself for a sleep and vice versa.

However, one question continues to evade answers and that is why it takes so long for our internal clock to reset when we travel to a vastly different time zone.

Gene’s Purpose

In order to synchronize the body’s internal clock quicker studies are currently underway as to how the gene works and how we can push it to retune quicker. Scientist does believe that this gene that slows down our body’s ability to adjust to a different time zone has a valid purpose. It is currently seen as a sort of buffer that helps ensure that the change is accurate and not just an anomaly.

Melatonin Supplements - Health Benefits and Side EffectsIt takes the brain some time to decide whether the information being delivered by the eyes is a reliable one and if a retune of the circadian clock is necessary. But this is also the cause as to why our bodies take some time to sync with a different time zone and the cause of jet lag.

Studies of SCN in mice were conducted and revealed that at least a hundred genes were reacting to the light and darkness test which then led to a slow but steady adjustment of the circadian clock within the mice.

But there was one specific molecule that took the attention of scientists, the SIK1. This molecule was discovered to be the one causing the slowdown of the body’s adaptation to a different time zone and is seen as the main cause of jet lag.

Scientists then went on and tested suppressing SIK1 from working which in turn resulted with the mice adjusting quicker from constant changes in the day and night cycle test.

Future of Curing Jet Lags

This new discovery about this specific gene offers a new potential cure from jet lag but scientists themselves admit that it is still a long way from being developed but it is a step in the right direction. This potential cure to jet lag can also cause some positive effect on several sleep disorders as well such as insomnia.

Melatonin Supplements

Melatonin Supplements – Health Benefits and Side Effects

Melatonin is a naturally produced hormone found inside the human body; specifically it is produced by a specific gland found in the brain called the pineal gland. Melatonin is produced on a regular basis everyday and on a set interval. The pineal gland secretes melatonin based on the body’s internal clock or circadian clock. Scientists have discovered that the peak hours when melatonin is produced is during the night. A healthy individual will produce melatonin at a rate of about 5 – 25 micrograms every night.

Melatonin for Jet Lag

Melatonin Supplements - Health Benefits and Side EffectsThe use of supplements containing melatonin has been proven to help prevent as well as cure jet lag. Studies have shown that using melatonin supplements on the day of your flight and continuously taking them for a couple more days can help the body adapt to the shift in time zone quicker. East bound and west bound travelers will have different dosage recommendations though. For those traveling westward it is advisable to take melatonin supplement for 4 days before bedtime. For east bound east bound travelers it is best to start taking melatonin supplements early before the flight during the bed time of your destination and continuously take one each night for 4 days once there.

Melatonin for Sleep Disorders

Melatonin supplements have been found to be quite effective for people who are suffering from sleeping disorders such as insomnia. Several studies conducted showed a huge percentage of people who took melatonin had far better results in terms of sleep quality than those who were given placebos. The recommended dosage is set at 30 to an hour before bedtime for best results. Research also suggests that melatonin supplement were more beneficial to people who are around the age of 50 and above, the age when melatonin production in the brain is significantly decreased. Melatonin also has a huge benefit for children that have certain developmental, intellectual or behavioral delays.Melatonin Supplements - Health Benefits and Side Effects

Miscellaneous Uses of Melatonin

Melatonin is currently being studied for use in other health cases and issues. While there is still no solid conclusion it is being seen as a possible treatment for several age specific conditions. One such case is with hot flashes during menopause. It is also being tested in muscle degeneration and pre-operative anxiety.

Melatonin also seems to be a good source of anti-inflammatory agents and has actually been used for treatment of several types of cancer. Melatonin is mainly used for treating chronic ailments such insomnia but this alone can help in preventing other negative conditions from developing such as obesity and diabetes.

Precautions in Using Melatonin

As with all types of medications, melatonin supplements must be used as the doctor instructed. Overdosing can lead to several unwanted side effects such as headaches, dizziness, depression and nausea. Melatonin has a number of health benefits that are still being unlocked by scientists today. This can be the key to beating sleep disorders and it can also lead to other health benefits. Time will tell on what part melatonin will play in the future of medications for sleep disorders but it seems that it will play a significant one.

Exercise Against Jet Lag

Positive Benefits of Exercise Against Jet Lag

Constant travelers will know exactly how much toll jet lag can take from the body. For those who have experienced traveling to a significantly different time zone chances are they felt nauseous and unease during the first day or so of arriving. Some will have to contend with this experience for a couple more days. Symptoms of jet lag can range from difficulty sleeping, dizziness and vomiting. So how can we prevent jet lag from ruining our travels? One technique being looked at that is said to help prevent jet lag is by a specific set of exercise routines. Does this claim hold true?

Exercise VS Jet Lag

Positive Benefits of Exercise Against Jet LagThere are several common symptoms that accompany jet lag. Nausea, vomiting, headaches, dizziness and stomachaches are all usually experienced by people who have jet lag from their travels. When you are feeling the effects of jet lag it is understandable that you just want to lie down in your bed and relax. However, this does not help treat your jet lag and you might still experience it afterwards. On the other hand, exercising is seen as something that can help lessen the effects of the jet lag you are experiencing or stop it altogether.

Studies are showing positive results when it comes to the effects of exercising on jet lag. It appears that exercising outdoors can actually help retune your internal clock faster. There are also 3 instances when exercising is beneficial to preventing and treating jet lag.

Pre-Flight Exercise

Before your flight is actually a good time to do some exercise, preferably high energy exercises. The point of this is to not only burn off some calories but also release some stress that you might be experiencing. If you do not have the time to conduct a proper high octane exercise then a brisk jog around your home or at the airport is just as good.

Try to Stay Active on the Plane

Positive Benefits of Exercise Against Jet LagLong flights can really elevate your stress levels as you are stuck in such a small place for a period of time. To avoid any cramping you should walk around every once and a while as this can keep your blood flowing throughout the flight. If walking around the plane is not your cup of tea then some simple isometric workouts will suffice.

You can try the following exercises if walking around the plane is not an option:

  • Shoulder Rolls
  • Shoulder Stretches
  • Leg Stretches
  • Glute Squeezes
  • Ab Stretches

Arrival and Prevention of Jet Lag

Jet lags do not hit you immediately after you land. It will usually take around the 3rd day for you to actually feel the effects of jet lag. In order to prevent that from happening be sure to do some exercises on the day you arrive at your hotel. A quick 30 minute brisk walking followed by some simple weight lifting exercise can help ease your body into the process of adapting to your new time zone.

It is surprising to discover that by performing some simple exercise routines we are able to combat the effects of jet lag. Remember to try this out if you are going on an out of town trip. Jet lag can ruin your vacation but by staying ahead of the curve you can easily block this irritating condition from getting the best of you.

Homeopathic Treatments for Jet Lag

Homeopathic Treatments for Jet Lag

Homeopathy is one the oldest forms of treatment. It operates under the principle that any substance that can cause an ailment can also help treat when given at a smaller and controlled dose. When it comes to treating jet lag, homeopathy has had a reasonable success rate.

Jet lag is debilitating condition wherein the body experiences several symptoms such as nausea, vomiting and sleeplessness. This is caused by the sudden change in time zone which the body is not used to. This is an exasperating experience that can ruin any vacation as your body will not be fit enough to fully enjoy what should have been a relaxing experience.Homeopathic Treatments for Jet Lag

Homeopathy Treatment for Jet Lag

Homeopathy offers several remedies to treat jet lag which are determined by the symptoms being experienced by the individual. However, there are a couple of well known herbal remedies that are used to treat most jet lags. Extract found from the following plants such as:

  • Daisy
  • Leopard’s Bane
  • Chamomile
  • Clubmoss
  • Ipecac

The compounds that can be derived from the plants listed above have properties that can help treat jet lag. However, keep in mind that the agents found in these plants can cause side effects when not properly used. But when diluted properly and given with the right dosage these are effective in curing jet lag.

How Does Homeopathic Treatments Work?

Simply put, homeopathic treatment will hasten the effect of jet lag which then forces the body to quickly adapt to the new time zone. When the body is naturally adapting to a different time zone it can usually take a couple of days for the circadian rhythm to readjust. By applying homeopathic treatment we can see improvements in a day or two, maybe even sooner.

Various Homeopathic Remedies for Each Symptom

Homeopathic Treatments for Jet LagHomeopathic uses different remedies for specific symptoms of jet lag. Listed below are these well-known remedies and their recommended dosage and when they should be used.

Arnica Montana – This herbal remedy is used to treat fatigue and dulled mental state. It is also known to have properties for healing the body such as the joints and muscles. When it comes to jet lag it helps by assisting the body maintains its tissue integrity which may become damaged due to prolonged inactivity.

Bellis Perennis – This remedy acts as a muscle relaxant which can prevent cramping during flights. It also acts to improve sleep quality.

Chamomile – This herb is well-known for its soothing effects on the mind and body. It is mainly used in homeopathic treatment to help ease the body into sleep.

Lycopodium – This herb can be used to treat digestive problems, it is also used as a relaxant.

Ipecacunha – This herbal remedy that is native of South America is used as an expectorant and helps you expel vomit by stimulating the respiratory tract.

Homeopathic remedies are all natural and relatively safe as long as it is prescribed by your doctor. These methods can help improve your health and prevent jet lag from surfacing during your travels.