By Jennifer Smith, Natural Medicine Practitioner and Certified in Holistic Nutrition
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Could poor gut flora be causing your sleep troubles? There is new research concerning how the health of your digestive system can lead to having insomnia or making the condition worse. Here is new information concerning the best ways to improve the health of your gut to have better sleeping patterns.
Scientists studied young healthy adults who suffer from sleeplessness on a routine basis to determine why they have insomnia. Research revealed that the individuals with insomnia tended to have poor bacterial systems in their guts. Researchers believe that the poor gut health of the test subjects led to changes in the body’s circadian rhythms, and in many cases, the test subjects also displayed anxiety while trying to sleep, including chronic bruxism or teeth grinding.
Researchers have known for many years that greasy or spicy food consumption before going to bed can lead to poor sleep, especially when someone has acid reflux. The condition of acid reflux is common in family groups, and it leads to a backwash of acid or bile into the esophagus or mouth. The individuals who have acid reflux suffer from chronic indigestion, and if they are reclining, then the condition is frequently worse. Someone with acid reflux may not sleep at night due to the constant backwash of bile that causes nausea.
Improving the digestive system’s functioning can improve your sleeping patterns, including reducing insomnia. Scientists believe that adjusting the balance of gut flora can help you to sleep better. In addition to avoiding greasy or spicy foods, you should begin to ingest more probiotics and antioxidants.
These nutritional elements are in foods such as richly colored fruits and vegetables along with dark chocolate. Yogurt that contains live cultures also can balance the bacteria in the digestive tract. Drinking too many caffeinated or alcoholic beverages can change the digestive system’s health, so you should avoid these beverages as much as possible.
While your gut health might not be the sole reason you are struggling with your sleep, it is a good thing to consider. Perhaps you have a poor diet or know you don’t get enough probiotics. These are good signs that it might be at least partially from your gut. This is when you want to start improving your digestive system and see if it makes a difference with your sleep.
Jennifer Smith, BA, NMP, CHN, FBCC
Jennifer Smith is a Natural Medicine Practitioner, Holistic Nutrition Practitioner, and Faith-Based Clinical Counselor. She has a Bachelor's degree in Christian Counseling. She has completed advanced training in Functional Nutrition, Functional Medicine, Natural Health Consultant diploma, Biblical natural medicine, and Biblical Eating and Clinical Nutrition. Jennifer has a virtual Natural Medicine practice in Naples, FL called Fx Remedies Virtual Care.
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