Experiencing Intense Social Jet Lag? You Might Need More Of These Nutrients
When we throw our circadian rhythms off with an irregular schedule, it negatively affects our overall well-being, but according to new research published in the journal Voprosy Pitaniia1, certain nutrients can help. Here's what the study tells us.
The relationship between social jet lag and certain nutrients.
Unless you're super adamant to go to bed and wake up at the same time every single day (even on the weekends), there's a good chance that come Monday morning, you're going to experience "social jet lag." Social jet lag occurs when your weekend schedule is significantly different from your weekday schedule, which leads to a disruption in your circadian rhythm.
For this study, researchers wanted to know if certain vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients affected the body's ability to "bounce back," so to speak, when circadian rhythm and/or sleep was disrupted.
To do so, they reviewed 78 pieces of scientific literature on the topic, looking for links between factors like sleep, nutrients, circadian rhythm, and more.
What the researchers found.
Based on the findings, not only is it important to mind your sleep hygiene and circadian rhythm, but further, certain nutrients can help you do so. Namely, getting adequate amounts of essential macromineral magnesium, B vitamin folate, polyunsaturated fatty acids in the omega-3 group (like EPA and DHA), and probiotics, may help your body handle social jet lag more effectively.
As the study authors note in their research, these findings are particularly important for those prone to social jet lag, whether because of an irregular work schedule or because of lifestyle choices.
"In risk groups for the development of social jet lag, along with a varied and nutritious diet, sleep hygiene, it is necessary to provide targeted supplementation with magnesium, folate, polyunsaturated fatty acids of the omega-3 family and probiotic products,"* they write.
And just as a note, these findings are not saying you can supplement away social jet lag—sleep hygiene is still essential. However, since nutrient inadequacy can have a negative impact on sleep biology, ensuring daily consumption of key sleep-centric nutrients (and especially in the event that you're up against a busy weekend) is a smart idea.
While we can all do our best to avoid social jet lag, sometimes, it's bound to happen. And in that case, this research indicates that ensuring we're getting adequate amounts of important nutrients, like magnesium and probiotics, can help us keep our sleep hygiene on track.*
Sarah Regan is a Spirituality & Relationships Editor, a registered yoga instructor, and an avid astrologer and tarot reader. She received her bachelor's in broadcasting and mass communication from State University of New York at Oswego, and lives in Buffalo, New York.