Tuesday, January 21, 2014

SFO to Phnom Penh with no Jet Lag

Asiana Business Class
Had a great trip  to South East Asia that started with a very comfortable journey in Asiana Business Class from San Francisco to Phnom Penh Cambodia. It was a 17 hour trip but it was pretty comfortable since we were flying west and Jet lag was on our side thanks to a new way of dealing with jet lag.

Appetizers and Champagne
We learned the newest jet lag info that the State dept uses for diplomats that fly all over the world and have to arrive fresh after landing from long international flights. Here’s what they say about jet lag:

The international traveler can avoid jet lag by simply not eating  for twelve to sixteen hours before breakfast time in the new time zone-at which point he should have breakfast. 

The fast works because our bodies have, in addition to our circadian clock, a second clock that might be thought of as a food clock or, perhaps better, a master clock. When food is scarce, this master clock suspends the circadian clock and commands the body to sleep much less than normally. Only after the body starts eating again does the master clock switch the circadian clock back on.

Bibimbop Korean Lunch
That’s just what we did on our 17 hour flight. We took off from SFO at noon and flew for 12 hours until we got to Seoul S Korea at 6 pm local time. We ate two meals on that flight and then boarded the 5 hour connecting flight to Phnom Penh which left at 7:10 pm from ICN. We reached PNH at 10:50 pm that night. We didn’t eat anything on the connecting flight and we got to Raffles in Phnom Penh at 11:30 and went to bed for 8 hours.

Supper. Last food we ate until Breakfast in Phnom Penh
Woke the next morning, had breakfast and we were ready to go. No jet lag even though we flew 17 hours and crossed the International Date Line. Fantastic way to start a trip. We ate well until we started our fast.

Definitely recommend this jet lag technique to any international travelers that plan to crosscross many time zones.


  1. Interesting - will have to try on our flight to South Africa in a couple weeks. Typically jet lag doesn't hit me on the 1st or 2nd day after arrival - it's the third. Did your method hold up?

  2. Getting light at the right times of the day can also be hugely helpful. Unfortunately, sometimes this requires adopting a rather inconvenient schedule for several days. We are working on a light-based technology developed at Stanford University that can adjust circadian phase (and treat jet lag) while you sleep: LumosTech.net!