If you are like the millions of people struggling to fall asleep at night, or stay asleep until your morning alarm, you may be wondering where exactly you can turn. Little known by many is the important role that gut health plays in ensuring you obtain a health nights sleep.
A lack of sufficient sleep on a nightly basis has incredibly pervasive impacts on both your mental and physical health. Sleep is necessary for both your brain and body to rest and recharge, and if you are not taking care of your body in that very important way you will likely start to feel its impacts in both your personal and professional life.
If you are looking for solutions to sleepless nights, it’s possible that you have considered either prescription or over-the-counter sleep aids. Those are not without their own side effects and can either lead to a groggy day, growing dependence on the chemical aids, or both.
Luckily, recent research is pointing to the belief that one very important aspect to maintaining healthy sleep is a healthy microbiome. Your microbiome is the name for the trillions of microorganisms that call your body home.
From your gut, to your skin, to your reproductive organs, your microbiome is responsible for aiding the body in some of its most important functions.
Your microbiome is tasked with helping bodily functions such as digestion, your immune system, your metabolism, and even your mental health. Considering all that, it probably isn’t all that surprising that probiotics are believed to have a positive impact on your sleep.
But how do the helpful little critters that call yourself home making lying down at night easier? Here are some of the ways.
Probiotics reduce stress and anxiety
This might seem hard to believe, but one of the primary causes of stress and anxiety may actually be your gut.
That’s right, the term “gut feeling” isn’t just some saying, it’s actually based in scientific fact. The reason for this is because the brain and the gut are two of the body’s biggest nervous system centers.
These two systems communicate and impact one another with what has been dubbed by scientists as the gut-brain axis.
One of the most obvious ways that a healthy gut can lead to reduced stress and anxiety is thanks to the serotonin that many healthy microbes create. Serotonin – known as the happy molecule – helps alleviate stress. This, in turn, can lead to better and more restful sleep as your body and mind are undergoing less anxiety on a day-to-day basis.
Not only is serotonin related to less anxiety and stress, studies show that is actually directly related to better sleep.
The beautiful thing is that it is widely believed that a healthy sleep schedule improves the chances that probiotics will survive and thrive in your body, so it can be an upward spiral to better health!
Maintaining sleep cycles
Sure, you’re a grownup and you don’t have to have a bedtime, but it certainly helps if your body has a general idea of when it is going to turn in and wake up each night and day. It’s not just something your parents used to tell you, it’s science!
As darkness begins to fall, the pineal gland begins to secrete melatonin, which makes you start to feel sleepy.
Probiotics can help increase this impact of this cycle due to the fact that some beneficial bacteria in your gut can boost your body’s supply of melatonin by increasing the levels of tryptophan.
Easing inflammation and other types of pain
There is no question that the jury is still out on a lot of the things that researchers and scientists hope probiotics can help aid in the human body.
As research is ongoing, it is hard to say with any amount of certainty that probiotics do some of the things that their proponents claim.
However, one thing that most scientists and doctors agree on is that probiotics can absolutely help improve the health of your digestive system and gut. Some of the primary things that probiotics are recommended for include ailments such as leaky gut syndrome, chronic bloat, acute diarrhea, constipation, and more.
It can be practically impossible to try to get a good night’s sleep with any of these issues.
The same can be said for inflammation in any part of the body due to an overactive immune system or allergic reaction.
By using a consistent regimen of probiotics, you can improve the health of your gut and vastly reduce the risk of undergoing any of these unhappy illnesses. If you want to start a healthy life with probiotics right away, you can easily find top probiotics brands to buy online.
Other ways to improve your sleep
It is important to remember that our bodies are a complete system. Nothing exists on its own without impacting other aspects of your health and body, and so it makes sense that the things that are helpful to a healthy and growing microbiome also help encourage healthy sleeping habits.
One of the best things you can do to encourage healthy sleep is to get regular exercise. This does not mean that you have to be a triathlete in order to get a good eight hours of sleep, but getting your body moving and your heart pumping for some portion of your day should be a priority.
Whether it’s heading to the gym, taking the dog out for a long walk, or anything in between, an active body is a happy body. A happy body is one that not only gets more sleep but enjoys more efficient sleep as well.
The same can be said about a healthy diet. Studies show that those who eat natural healthy foods are bound to enjoy better sleep on a night-to-night basis.
If you are struggling with unhealthy sleeping habits, consider speaking to your primary care provider about what could be done to enhance the chances of a healthy night’s sleep.
Remember, probiotics are just one part of the equation. If you want to truly lead the healthiest lifestyle possible, you are going to want to do all you can to encourage your body to be at its happiest and healthiest.