Picture the wildest night club on the planet, where strobe lights pump blinding lights, across disco balls and dance floors. Sound restful? Yeah, no. Now picture yourself on an airplane, somehow finding a way to sleep peacefully, when strobe lights flash brilliant light at you for two milliseconds, every ten seconds, for an hour. Does that sound like the cure to jet lag? It may be.

a bed in a plane

Though the process of having strobe lights flash at you for an hour sounds worse than jet lag, Scientists at Stanford University believe that light flashes are the key to “hacking” into our circadian rhythms, tricking the body into beating the lag. So how does it work? While you’re asleep, strobe lights, timed to bridge the gap between departure time and destination time, trick the body into believing it’s still light out, forcing you to be tired, later, or earlier than your body is accustomed. The flashes are essentially a reset button to your body’s circadian rhythms, moods and schedules…

a pair of sleeping masks and a pillow

For a flight from New York to London, a five hour time difference, you’d generally require five days to adjust at the bodies natural rate, one hour per day. In theory, you could use the strobe light, in two millisecond flashes, for the destination time you’d like to accustom to. So in the middle of your sleep in New York, your flashes would go off at 4AM, simulating a 9AM London wake up, which you could begin the day before your flight, of your flight, or on your flight. Hey, it’s better than the CIA tips for beating jet lag

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Gilbert Ott

Gilbert Ott is an ever curious traveler and one of the world's leading travel experts. His adventures take him all over the globe, often spanning over 200,000 miles a year and his travel exploits are regularly...

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