How to Stay Healthy on Long Haul Flights

When you travel in an economy or coach section in a plane for a longer period, it can be stressful and can cause harm to your health. You definitely tend to feel fatigued and experience all kinds of symptoms like vomiting, headache, body pain, desperation for water and uneasiness.

So here are few tips to make yourself comfortable and stay healthy during your travels on long haul flights.

How to Stay Healthy on Long Haul Flights

Drink! Water!

The low humidity of pressurized cabins can cause dehydration.  Many passengers intensify the problem by loading up on alcoholic and carbonated beverages.  Flyers should choose water instead.

Some experts have recommended doubling our intake of water when flying.  To help achieve this goal, pack an empty water bottle in your carry-on.  Most airports provide water fountains. 

Start drinking water before you board the plane.  Check onboard for water dispensers or ask the air hostess to fill the container for you.  Do not rely on the beverage service, as this will be insufficient to keep you hydrated.  Once you have landed, fill up on water once again. 


Do not neglect to hydrate your skin as well.  Pack a moisturizer, three ounces or less, and reapply a few times during the flight.  If your eyes are prone to dryness, be sure to carry on eye drops too. Moisturize your lips with a lip balm. All perfect items to bring in your in-flight comfort kit.

Staying properly hydrated is one line of defense against digestive problems.  Many seasoned travelers complain of constipation when flying for a prolonged length of time.  Don’t drink coffee before and during your flight as this is really dehydrating.

Another way to combat this problem is to eat foods rich in fiber.  Try to stick to whole foods, vegetables, and grains.  Avoid fatty meats and desserts. 

Eat Light

Another rule of thumb to avoid stomach problems is to not consume food out of boredom.  Just because someone places food in front of you, does not mean you have to eat it. 

The airlines may serve meals at times that your body is not accustomed to eating.  Consuming a heavy meal at that time may upset your digestive system. Take fruits, cheese and crackers in between your meals to have a filled feeling.


Airline stewards and pilots also suffer from fatigue.  Extended periods of travel and disrupted sleeping patterns can wreak havoc on your health. 

Rest as much as you can on a long-haul flight.  A sleep mask to cover your eyes, earplugs, and a comfortable sweater with a hood can help block distractions that disturb sleep. Or buy one of those fantastic noise-canceling headphones, adored by many travelers.

Keep Moving

Exercise is just as important as rest.  Make physical activity a priority before and after your journey.  Stretch your legs and arms during the flight.  Do not stay in one position for too long.  This could potentially lead to blood clots.

Good blood circulation ensures a comfortable journey. The lymph system must receive constant blood circulation, while traveling by air. Avoid crossing your legs while you are seated, as it can stop the blood circulation to your legs.

To reduce stiffness, fatigue and discomfort during long-distance flights, you can try some simple stretch exercises in-flight, as this can help lower the risk of venous thrombosis or clotting of blood. The blood clots are very dangerous as they can sometimes lead to heart attack, seizure or even coma. Here are some tips to prevent them:

  • You can start off by doing some simple exercises like holding your carry bag as close to your body as possible, at a ninety-degree angle and then doing a few biceps curls. That should give you a good workout.
  • If you are good at balancing then you can place your carry bag on your ankles and do some leg lifts, so as to reduce pressure on your ankles.
  • A small walk in the cabin can also be relaxing and it helps you stretch your legs.
  • You can also try some hand stretches by placing the palms of your hands together and pushing them as hard as you can. Hold the position as long as possible or hold your arms out flat for some time, balancing a book on top.
  • Rest for a while and then repeat.

Compression socks can help prevent swelling and increase circulation. You should only purchase these after seeking a doctor’s advice.

Bring a Neck Pillow

Take extra care for your neck and back. Sitting in the plane for too long can cause neck and back pain. Ensure you have an additional pillow or cushion apart from the one given to you in the plane.

Warm Clothes

Dress warm because the temperature of the cabin is usually set to 22 to 24 degrees Celsius. So wear comfortable shoes and loose, warm clothes.

Take Care of Your Ears

Yawn frequently or chew your gum or swallow your saliva to depressurize and pop your ears during the flight.


Guard yourself against germs that may spread in such close quarters.  Load up on vitamin C before the flight and after you have arrived at your destination. 


If you are mindful to take care of yourself before, during, and after the flight, you can avoid potential health problems and adjust well to the new time zone.  Staying well is the best way to experience an enjoyable flight. 

How to Stay Healthy on Long Haul Flights

Are long-haul flights Bad for Your Health?

Vertigo and faintness are rare, though they are most likely to happen on long flights. Also, most people can safely handle long flights. Cheese and meat loaf with oats in a container. This recipe is low in fat and has a balanced protein and carbohydrate content.

What does long-haul flights do to your body?

Sitting for a long time can affect the circulation and swollen feet of people traveling. It can also increase the risk of developing deep vein thrombosis. These healthy options are usually packed in a variety of containers. They can be easily packed and eaten on planes.

Does flying affect your breathing?

Breathing can also get affected by the lower oxygen levels in a plane. It can lead to lightheadedness and shallow breathing. It’s a common recommendation that people move their legs for about two hours a day. But, he says that’s not enough time to wake up.

How can I relax when flying?

While on-flight entertainment is recommended to calm down nervous flyers, listen to music or read a book to help drown out the ambient noise. Although it’s not ideal for everyone, showering after flights is a great way to get rid of the bugs that can infect you. According to Matt, it’s also beneficial for the hair and skin.

Should you fly on an empty stomach?

Not having eaten in a while can make you more prone to experiencing motion sickness. Low air pressure can decrease the amount of oxygen in the air. It can cause significant symptoms for people with lung disease.

Does flying make asthma worse?

While flying, people with respiratory conditions may experience a drop in the amount of oxygen in their blood. This is a common symptom of chronic lung disease. Do I need to take aspirin before a plane flight to prevent blood clots?

How do you survive long distance flights?

Get your body ready for the flight. Before you go flying, make sure to bring a flashlight, batteries, and a headlamp. These items will help you get used to the darkness and adjust to its brightness.

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