When you find yourself struggling to doze off at the end of a long day, you’re likely to look at the usual culprits of a sleepless night: eating the wrong foods before bed, working out too close to bedtime, a glass of wine too many, stress, etcetera, etcetera. But the root of your sleep troubles might be somewhere else entirely – in your gut.
Gut health has been a bit of a buzzword in recent months, as more and more studies aim to demonstrate the importance of maintaining a healthy gut in an effort to maintain top notch health overall. As it turns out, the connection between gut health and sleep isn’t an exception to the rule, as research has shown that the human gut microbiome – the collective bacteria in your gut – has a role in affecting everything from your circadian rhythm to the production and regulation of sleep-regulating hormones like melatonin.
And as with most functions in your body, the gut-sleep connection is hardly a one-way street. Not only does your gut play a serious role in affecting how well you sleep, but the quality of your sleep likewise has a role in how healthy your gut is. For example, studies suggest that disruptions in the circadian rhythm can have a significant impact on the health of gut bacteria.
The secret to keeping everything running smoothly in your gut (which in turn will help you sleep better, which in turn will further promote a healthy gut) is focusing on avoiding things like processed foods that throw off your system in the first place. Beyond that, though, you can improve the health of your gut microbiome by making sure that your getting plenty of key vitamins and minerals, like magnesium and calcium. You’ll also want to make probiotic- and prebiotic-rich foods key components of your diet (think yogurt, kefir, tempeh, leeks, dandelion greens, and garlic).
Next time you’re struggling to snooze and are looking for the cause of your sleep troubles, it might be a good idea to go with your gut. And just for good measure, it never hurts to have a bit of reBloom on hand to make better sleep a sure thing night after night!