Flying a long-haul route overseas soon, or at least planning on becoming a secret agent? Check out the diet CIA operatives use when they’re traveling across the world that helps them kick jetlag out the door—be warned, though, it might seem a bit extreme for anyone who really loves to eat frequently.
We all know it: jetlag sucks. No one wants to get to a new destination just to be sleepy and feeling gross all the time. And once you finally get over it, it’s time to hop on a plane and go home again.
Luckily, we can beat this problem with an alteration to our diet. It’s a method Central Intelligence Agency operatives (read: spies) use when they travel overseas, called the Argonne Anti-Jet-Lag Diet.
“Anyone traveling across three or more time zones can use the Argonne Anti-Jet-Lag Diet to eliminate or reduce jet lag,” said Argonne National Laboratory’s Dave Baurac. “The Argonne Anti-Jet-Lag Diet maintains our healthy cellular rhythms by using the same natural time cues that nature uses, such as meal contents and timing, light and dark cycles and daily activity cycles.”
Here’s how it works: You have to fast. Determine the typical breakfast time for wherever you’re going, and then fast for 12 to 16 hours before that time. During the fast, you can only drink water. Your first meal will be in your new destination at breakfast time, so your body will be accustomed to the new time zone immediately.
That’s the shortened version of the diet, though. CIA operatives use a version that takes several days of intermittent fasting based on the time zone they’re traveling to, in order to condition their bodies for the new schedule.
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