What changes happen to our body when we are traveling on a plane?
Traveling on a plane at 35,000 feet is the equivalent of being on an 8000 foot mountain. At the same time, the humidity is on a plane is lower than being in the desert!
Here are some of the changes that occur to our body when we fly:
-The reduced air pressure decreases our oxygen level by 6-25%. For healthy passengers this is not a problem, but can cause difficulty for those with pulmonary or cardiac problems, as well as the elderly.
-Our vision can be affected by the reduced oxygen level, causing our eyes to feel strained.
-The sensitivity of our taste buds decreases by up to 30% due to the low air pressure and low humidity on the flight. This also makes certain things taste better while flying, such as the savory flavor of tomato juice.
-Our sense of smell also decreases, which can cause food to taste bland.
-The change in air pressure can cause increased flatulence (farting). When we fly, the gases in our digestive system expands by 30%, resulting in this problem. Planes often have charcoal filters to reduce the odors, and the frequent flier can also now purchase charcoal underwear to filter their flatulence.
-Our skin dries out by 37% from its baseline, and leads to itchiness.
-Studies have shown that our immune system can be affected by the change in air pressure, making it more likely for us to become sick after flying.