Inflight meditation and how it can help beat jet lag

By Lianne Richards


This is a community service announcement. Vedic meditation reduces jetlag. 

Yes, you heard that correctly. Vedic meditation reduces jetlag. As a passionate traveller my initial response to hearing this was - sign me up immediately! Now after many years of research I can confirm via direct experience that this is actually a thing.  

So for all those enjoying a mid-Winter break in far away exotic destinations across Europe and Asia – yes I have been watching your posts on social media as my golden tan from India slowly washes off – please see tips and tricks below on how to arrive back in chilly Melbourne without feeling like you need another holiday to recover from your jet lag.  

And for those of you commuting between Melbourne and Sydney on the red eye for work, these tips and tricks will also help you arrive at your 9am meeting feeling ready to go rather than reaching for the coffee. 

After all, are our bodies really designed to be strapped into a narrow chair and transported at 900kph in a pressurised environment at 35,000 feet in the air? Travel across multiple time zones throwing out our body’s natural circadian rhythms? 

Here’s what to do inflight to up level your experience:

Prevent dehydration: The best way to prevent dehydration stemming from low humidity and dry airplane cabins is to avoid cold, iced drinks and instead favour plain warm/hot water throughout the entire trip. According to Ayurveda, warm water is absorbed more quickly by the body than cold water and is therefore the best way to eliminate toxins from the body and rehydrate. Adding fresh ginger or herbal tea (especially ginger/chamomile) to your warm/hot water to aid digestion and flush out toxins is always a nice touch. Avoid caffeine and alcohol as they have a dehydrating effect and worsen jetlag. You could even apply Nasya oil to lubricate the inner wall of the nostrils to prevent internal dehydration and promote mental clarity. Check out for more information on Nasya oil and its benefits. 

Aid digestion: Travel makes our digestion delicate and when we don’t digest well we can feel lethargic. According to Ayurveda cold food is harder to digest than warm food. It is therefore best to favour warm foods or eat before you leave and avoid eating much on the flight. If you are super organised you could even bring your own snacks on the flight. Your digestion will thank you for it later.

Move: Consciously move whether it’s in your seat or standing to keep your circulation moving and to avoid stiff joints and sore muscles. Walking up and down the aisle, heel raises, standing twists, massaging your legs and feet, and gentle yoga stretches will all help you feel fresher by increasing the flow of prana or energy in the body. 

Meditate as much as is comfortable: The general rule of 20 minutes meditation twice a day no longer applies. Yes that’s right we are throwing out the rulebook. The new rule whilst inflight is to meditate twice for 20 minutes minimum and then as frequently and for as long as you like. That means you can meditate multiple times and for prolonged periods. Be guided by your fine level of feeling about what is needed. The best part is that Vedic meditation delivers deep rest whilst sitting vertically, which means that when you disembark you will look and feel like you have been sleeping horizontally in business class for the duration of the flight. Can I get a Jai Guru Deva! You could even try a pre-bed meditation to help you fall asleep.  Oh, and did I mention it will help you quickly adjust to the new time zone?

Happy Travels!

Mahasoma Meditation