Let’s face it: Human beings weren’t designed to spend hours at a time packed inside a pressure-controlled capsule with recycled air and manufactured heat with hundreds of other people tens of thousands of feet in the air. But that’s what we do — some of us often — every time we get on an airplane. Add in the jet lag and sleeplessness, and you have a recipe for true physiological torture.

So what really happens to your body when you fly? And what can you do to combat, or at least minimize, the effects?