gut health and sleep

The surprising link between gut health and sleep

We all love a good snooze, right?! But it can be difficult to get a good night’s sleep, however good we are with our sleep routines! Here’s how to unlock restful nights based on the intricate connection between gut health and sleep.

In the pursuit of a good night’s sleep, many of us don’t know the profound impact that gut health can have on sleep quality.

In fact, growing evidence shows a strong link between the microbiome – the community of trillions of microorganisms in our digestive system – and our sleep quality.

A healthy gut microbiome plays a pivotal role in the synthesis of neurotransmitters like serotonin and melatonin. These neurotransmitters are both critical for regulating your sleep-wake cycles.

When the microbiome is imbalanced, it can lead to disruptions in these neurotransmitter levels, contributing to insomnia and restless nights.

Furthermore, an unhealthy gut can trigger inflammation, releasing cytokines that may interfere with sleep by disrupting circadian rhythms. This inflammation can also compromise the blood-brain barrier, allowing harmful substances to reach the brain and disturb its functions, including those related to sleep regulation.

To promote better sleep, studies show that incorporating probiotics and prebiotics into your diet can have a positive effect on sleep quality.

Fermented foods, high-fiber vegetables, and supplements can enhance the diversity of your gut bacteria. A diverse microbiome creates an optimal environment for health and well-being.

  1. Interconnectedness: Good sleep and the gut microbiome are linked. Studies show that good sleep keeps the gut microbiome healthy, and an overgrowth of certain bacteria can lead to sleep disturbances.
  2. Microbiome diversity and sleep: Increased microbiome diversity is linked with more sleep and better sleep quality. This means that feeding the gut microbes well could lead to less sleep issues and improved mood.
  3. Hormonal influence: Sleep quality exerts a profound influence on gut health. Low-quality sleep can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria due to insufficient suppression of cortisol, the stress hormone

These surprising facts highlight the intricate relationship between good sleep and the gut microbiome, emphasizing the importance of maintaining both for overall health and well-being.

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Other resources:

Gut microbiome diversity is associated with sleep physiology in humans – PMC (nih.gov)