Four ways for travellers to lessen the symptoms of jet lag

A long-haul trip can play havoc with your body and mind. An essential oil massage, a home-made cup of ginseng and longan tea, a good sleep and plenty of skin nourishment could help reset your circadian rhythm

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 01 August, 2017, 7:01pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 01 August, 2017, 7:01pm

Holidays to far-flung destinations are exciting. But crossing time zones has one major downside for millions of travellers: jet lag.

Caused by disruptions to the circadian rhythm (the body’s biological clock), jet lag disturbs sleep patterns, causing insomnia, early waking, excessive sleepiness and fatigue during the day. Other symptoms include stomach problems such as constipation or diarrhoea, mood swings and difficulty concentrating.

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There are treatments that claim to help alleviate the symptoms:

The Strand “Time for me” sleep ritual by Comfort Zone

HK$1,180 for 60 minutes

The sound of calming waves and heartbeats, and a shoulder massage with essential oils should help ease stress.

“Having a treatment before a flight helps because the essential oils alleviate anxiety and calm nervous flyers,” says Tamara Hockly, senior beauty therapist at The Strand. “The client should sleep well on the plane and arrive feeling refreshed. The amaranth oil will nourish the skin.”

The Strand, 18 Cochrane St, Central, tel: 2850 7686

Drink ginseng tea

Cinci Leung, a registered traditional Chinese medicine practitioner, explains: “It is especially dry in a plane cabin. That is why people often experience dry skin, mouth and nose and throat and excessive thirst. Combined with jet lag, the body will seemingly have worked through the night and that further lowers your yin. When you have less yin in your body, yang will increase accordingly, eventually causing excessive heat.”

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She advises travellers to pack some tea made of six grams of American ginseng and the pulp of five longan, and keep it warm in a thermos flask. “This nourishes yin, clears heat, promotes fluid production and calms the mind.”


Frequent travellers often find certain hours to fly, or cap a certain time span while flying to get some shut-eye, so that when they land, they are fresh-faced and bright-eyed. Massage a small amount of essential oil with essences into your shoulder muscles before you go to sleep.

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Aromatherapy Associates Perfect Partners’ Relax Deep oil eases the mind and puts you to sleep, while the Revive Morning oil gives a reinvigorating boost when you arrive.

Aromatherapy Associates concept store, Gateway Arcade, Harbour City, Canton Rd, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 6823 2076

Wake up refreshed

A bonus for women (and for men, if you’re interested in this sort of thing): Sulwhasoo Lumitouch Powder comes with an invigorating ginseng scent that aims to instantly awaken the senses. If that fails to keep you energised as the plane lands, don’t despair; a few pats of this on your skin will keep the pesky redness and dryness at bay.

Sulwhasoo, shop 1501-2, Tower 1, Times Square, Causeway Bay, tel: 2114 4728