Keeping Healthy While Flying

The only thing separating many travelers from their energy-sapping work environment and that longed-for annual beneficial vacation is an airplane ride. But if they haven't read well, that time in the sky anyplace from a couple of hours to the equivalent of a day or more when crossing hemispheres and numerous time zones - can basically be, as far as the human body is concerned, a sojourn to heck. "The important thing people need to understand about an airplane cabin is it's genuinely not a healthy environment," says Leslie Tim, a yoga therapist and breathing specialist in New York. brady points out that the pressure in an airplane cabin at cruising height may make passengers feel like they are at about 8,000 feet, as although they were high up in the mountains. "Just sitting and breathing in that surroundings is a challenge to the system," Brady says. "People don't realize they're at 8,000 feet of pressure and inhaling is more difficult. In the cabin, there's less obtainable oxygen in the air. This puts an added load on the system, which is seeking to get the required amount of oxygen into the bloodstream." A different factor that may affect breathing is the air's diminished humidity, which is usually below 25%, in contrast to a relaxed home environment where the moisture level is at about 35%, says Brady. He recommends long, easy, deep breaths.

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