Wait, what? This isn't how you look after an eight-hour flight? Fortunately there's an app for that. It may not turn you into a model, but the app could help thwart jetlag the next time you're hopping through multiple time-zones, you world traveler, you. The iPhone app, called Entrain, was designed by researchers at the University of Michigan.
Researchers figured out how to accurately calculate a person's circadian rhythm, or the internal clock that determines a person's waking and sleeping schedule. Using that calculation, the Entrain app is able to advise people on when to enjoy the light — and when to call it a night.
Exposure to light has often been called the best jetlag cure, because circadian rhythms take their biggest cue from light. But no one (apart from that random person at the airport bar who claims to have all the great travel tips) has ever been able to tell an individual when to go to bed and when to wake up to get over jetlag the quickest.
Entrain can tell you, for example, to be up and around light sources from 7:40 a.m. to 9 p.m. on the first day of a trip from London to Detroit; from 6:20 a.m. to 7:40 p.m. on the second day; and from 5 a.m. to 7:20 p.m. on the the third day, according to a news release. And on the fourth day?
Your body will be synched the following morning. If you veer from the schedule, you can tell the app and it will recalculate going forward.
If you don't follow the schedule, it'll just take more time to adjust. The researchers also advise being in the brightest light possible during the prescribed times of day, and the darkest dark when you should be sleeping. "Even a short burst of bright light at the wrong time can extend the time it takes to adjust," they say.
And if you feel like hitting the club, they suggest blocking out certain types of light "with rose-tinted glasses or a visor." We're calling it: Visors are the new fanny pack.