Papillon Luck has spent her life on and off a plane. Having run a fitness business, then a wedding business and working in the high octane world of hedge funds and investment banking all her life, Papillon would try out different supplements to try to help ward off jetlag in a bid to keep her feeling tip-top when she skipped a time zone or two. “But nothing was any good,” she says, “I bought every single jet lag product on the market and the majority of them were just B vitamins and a load of sugar and just not enough to make a difference to the way I felt.” And so Papillon set out to create a travel super supplement herself instead.
Whilst we know that travelling can make us feel tired, lethargic and can leave our brains like mush, there is still very little knowledge available about what actually happens to the insides and outsides of our bodies on a flight. Most people just know they need to keep hydrated. Papillon set out to understand how our bodies cope (or don’t cope) and worked with an aviation scientist – Dr Perry – who proudly holds the rare title of Academician of the International Academy of Aviation and Space Medicine (there are only 200 in the world).
Through her research Papillon discovered various different facts about flying. Did you know that for every time zone crossed it can require up to 24 of recovery? Or that 30,000 feet up there’s 25% less oxygen? And whilst there’s less oxygen your intestinal gas can expand by 50%? (A very good reason why the curry onboard is perhaps not the best idea). Other facts that she tells me I didn’t previously know are that our kidneys don’t metabolise well at all at altitude, but start again on landing, and that we shouldn’t even begin to think about using our normal skincare in the air because dehydration levels are such that it just won’t cut it.
Working with a crack team of scientists, nutritionists, formulators and travel wellness experts Papillon set about creating a range of supplements that contain 56 active ingredients and two patented ingredients. After two years, the result is three sachets as well as botanical infusions to be taken at different stages of flying. It is the only supplement range on the market, Papillon tells me, that addresses the 6 health functions that get disturbed during travel – our immune systems, our digestion, circulation, energy, cognitive function and our sleep or rest.
There is nothing within the formulations that doesn’t, she says, ‘Earn the right to be included.” Therefore there are no fillers or artificial colourings and flavourings and just a tiny bit of stevia instead of sugar to sweeten the taste (she explains that all those active ingredients don’t taste like honey) . Using the highest quality ingredients she could find Papillon has ensure they also have the best absorption rate possible to ensure they are distributed quickly into our bloodstream. She also hasn’t gone down the ‘plink, plink, fizz’ route of effervescent tablets, because, she explains, “This mechanism leaves much less space for active ingredients.”
Jet Fuel therefore comes as a set of three sachets handy enough to ‘Pour in a water bottle mid-turbulence,” each with a different purpose. No.1 is the ‘Health’ Jet Fuel which provides ingredients that help look after your digestive, circulatory and immune system. Papillon has used vitamin C in the form of Ascorbic acid, which has a time-releasing manner. She has also used vitamin D3 instead of D2 because it is more effective at being utilised by the body (despite being much more expensive). This product also contains extremely robust probiotics to survive the travel environment.
No.2 The ‘Performance’ Jet Fuel provides ingredients to help maintain energy whilst keeping your mind sharp and focused. It uses Iron Ferrous-Bisglycinate which is better absorbed by the body than other types of iron and doesn’t have the side effects of cheaper forms. Other ingredients are Ginkgo Biloba for its anti-inflammatory effects and antioxidant activity and B vitamins which are the best form for absorption.
Finally, there’s No.3 The ‘Rest’ Jet Fuel which provides ingredients to help you relax, reduce tiredness and fatigue. Papillon has used the most natural form of 5-HTP which is well known for helping calm the nervous system and Zinc Bisglycinate which is better for rest than the zinc used in the health supplement.
With a calculator on the website that tells you how much you will need for your journey, there is nothing that Papillon hasn’t thought about and has put the products through a rigorous round of testing with some of the most hardcore frequent fliers she could find “We has one tester who went 74,000 on a business trip and took Jet Fuel every day,” she says “He would email me to say how amazing he felt and that he had no jet lag or fatigue.”
Watch this ‘air’ space.