Eat Healthier And Get Probiotics For Insomnia
Your diet has a significant impact on your sleep habits, so watching what you eat and drink and when would help you a lot when managing your sleep. Caffeine in coffee and tea, for example, can be the reason why you have trouble falling asleep at night. So, avoid having these drinks after 2 p.m. Also, try to stay away from fatty and sugary foods. They are awful for your health in general, but they even interrupt your hormones and sleep. Apart from that, try to eat more foods rich in probiotics as they can help improve your sleep.
The Gut And The Brain
Gut bacteria can not only affect your gut function, but also your mind function! Research has shown that the microorganisms in your gut play different roles in your neural development, brain chemistry and emotional behavior.
There is now evidence that these amazing gut bacteria produce sleep-related neurochemicals such as serotonin, dopamine and acetylcholine that are all involved with how much time you spend asleep each night.
Your brain requires certain levels of these hormones and chemicals in order for your memory to function properly, as well as your learning and mood.
For example, when you experience psychological stress from anxiety-producing events such as exams, giving a speech or an important office meeting, you may experience some level of gastric discomfort even to the point of diarrhea. This is because your gut bacteria can both affect your brain and be affected by your brain. This two-way street is referred to as the gut-brain-axis .
You see, the cells lining your gastrointestinal tract play a major role in the production of hormones and neurotransmitters responsible for daily sleep patterns. Your gut bacteria can therefore have a huge impact on how well you sleep each night.
Gut bacteria influence the levels of hormones like:
As you can see, the proper functioning of your gut is extremely important to restful sleep! Thats why its vital for you to keep those many different types of beneficial bacteria as healthy as possible.
How To Improve Sleep Through Gut Health
As both experts have shown, what’s happening in your gut is very likely related to how well you sleep at night. But the big underlying question comes down to how to use this helpful intel to get better rest. Since there’s a strong connection between good bacteria and good sleep , Dr. Breus recommends eating foods known to boost the good guys. “Your diet has a significant influence over the health of your microbiome,” he says. “Diets heavy on sugars, fatty- and highly-processed foods can alter the make-up of your gut microbiome, reducing the abundance of beneficial microorganisms. Limiting these foods, and replacing them with whole, unprocessed nutrient-rich foods like vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, can help restore and protect the beneficial bacteria in your gut.”
Dr. Breus also recommends eating a wide variety of plants, which can help feed and support the growth of a wider range of beneficial gut bacteria. “A diet rich in whole fruits and vegetables is the foundation of healthy living, and healthy sleep,” he says. “To give your body a true diversity of beneficial bacteria, pay attention to getting as broad a variety of plant-based foods as you can.” It’s the same advice gastroenterologist Will Bulsiewicz, MD,previously told Well+Good, saying “itâs scientifically proven that the single greatest predictor of a healthy gut is a diversity of plants .”
Watch the video below for more tips on how to eat with gut health in mind:
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The Role Of Prebiotics In Sleep
A BBC documentary titled The Truth About: Sleep with Dr Michael Mosely investigated this phenomenon further. Dr Mosely, who himself struggles with insomnia, trialled a dietary prebiotic powder supplement for a period of 5 days and measured the effect it had on his sleep.
Results from the BBC study by Professor Philip Burnet from the University of Oxford.
Results at day 5 showed that Dr Moselys time spent asleep increased, and his time spent restless in bed decreased, in comparison to initial measurements taken before supplementation. These results show the sharp advantages that prebiotic supplementation can provide for improving sleep.
Further research found that both REM and NREM stages of sleep were increased through prebiotic supplementation. The REM sleep stage is associated with restoration and recovery of the body, so this suggests not only an increase in quantity but also in quality of sleep.
The Benefits Of Probiotics For Good Sleep
You have heard that probiotics are a great way to encourage healthy gut bacteria. This can lead to better digestion and immune health. But, while these are certainly major benefits of taking probiotics, what many people dont realize is that probiotics can help you to sleep better, too.
Research now suggests that probiotics have a direct effect on sleep quality, helping you to fall asleep more easily at night and encourage healthy sleep cycles.
One study showed that people who drank a probiotic drink containing a strain of lactobacillus had significantly improved sleep efficiency and fewer episodes of waking up in the night.
Another recent study suggested that taking a multi-strain probiotic containing Lactobacilli and Bifidobacterium could be especially helpful for promoting sleep. The study investigated the effects of probiotics on young women when taken for six weeks.
It was found that probiotic supplementation improved many factors of the womens mood and overall wellbeing, including reducing their feeling of depression, anger and fatigue, and improving their sleep quality.
It also appears that prebiotics can help with your sleep. Prebiotics are a special type of fiber that cant be broken down in the gut, so they become a kind of food for your gut microbiome. When we eat these non-digestible food components, we help to fuel the growth of “good” gut bacteria.
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Reduce Your Stress Levels
Stress is the enemy of your gut. Not only can experiencing stress affect your digestive system, it can also impact your gut flora, altering the balance of bacteria which can cause a number of unpleasant symptoms, particularly if you suffer from a digestive condition like IBS. This is because your nervous system has no way of distinguishing between moderate stress and a life or death situation and, in a fight or flight scenario, digesting your food just isnt a priority.
As a consequence, your digestive system can slow down and become sluggish, meaning that waste products linger in your gastrointestinal tract, sometimes getting reabsorbed into your bloodstream which can increase your population of bad bacteria. If you want more advice about how to tackle stress, you could check out our Stress Advisor, Mariannas top 10 stress busting tips!
Your Gut Flora Can Affect Your Immunity
Your gut and your immune system are closely linked, with over 70% of your immune cells residing in your digestive tract. In many ways your gut flora helps to protect your immune cells by acting almost like a shield, as they are capable of activating your epithelial cells, the layer of cells that protect your gut from foreign pathogens and germs.2
Interestingly, your gut flora can also regulate your inflammatory immune response, which helps to prevent the immune system from over-reacting and triggering widespread inflammation. Since inflammation is often associated with digestive flare-ups and pain sensitivity, this could help to make sure that your sleep isnt interrupted by these factors. When your gut flora isnt functioning properly, it can result in an immune system thats more vulnerable to pathogens and inflammation not so ideal for your sleep!
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Bad Gut Bacteria Is Linked To Poor Sleep
Dr. Drossman has found with his work that the inverse is also true: just how good gut bacteria is linked to good sleep, bad gut bacteria is associated with poor sleep. ” are still studying this and it isn’t quite clear if the bad bacteria is affecting the brain or if the brain is affecting gut composition,” he says. In other words: it’s a bit of a chicken or the egg situation. To his point, one study published in the journal Public Library of Science found some evidence that while total microbiome diversity is associated with better sleep, the presence of certain specific bacterial strains correlated to poor sleep .
Gut Health & Sleep On Bbc
Did you see the interesting show on the BBC about sleep? The programme, titled The Truth about Sleep, with Dr Michael Mosley, looked into factors such as diet and lifestyle, as well as gut bacteria and prebiotic fibres – discussing the way they can affect and possibly increase our sleep quality.
his is a topic Im very keen on as sleep is an important aspect of our lives, yet so many of us dont always get enough of it. One of the things that caught my attention was the importance of your gut microbiome and their influence on sleep! Read more about the gut microbiome: All About The Microbiome.
We are aware that stress can have an effect on our microbiome and lead to dysbiosis in the gut. However, what we didn’t know until recently was that this could in turn affect our sleep cycle.
Diets rich in prebiotics are thought to help with improving the amount and growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut – which in turn reduces stress linked to sleep deprivation in many people. As the research into prebiotics and sleep is still in its infancy, it was great firstly hearing about some new research into the topic, and then seeing it put to the test on Dr. Michael Mosley himself.
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Your Brain And Your Gut Know Each Other Pretty Well
To understand why the gut has a relationship with your sleep, its first important to know that your gut actually has a very close relationship with your brain. Experts who study the microbiome say whats in your gut affects your sleep thanks, at least in part, to what they call the gut-brain axis.
The brain is the bodys command center, so its constantly sending and receiving information from every one of the bodys parts and systems. But theres evidence that the connection between the gut and the brain is especially strong and complex, says Emeran Mayer, MD, a professor of medicine, physiology, and psychiatry at the University of California in Los Angeles and the author of The Mind-Gut Connection.
Dr. Mayer says that the guts microorganisms seem to possess several signaling mechanisms that allow them to communicate with the brain in ways that can influence a persons mood, appetite, stress level, and much else. One of our hypotheses is that these bacteria produce metabolites that go back to the brain, he says. Another possibility, he says, is that gut bacteria trigger the release of immune system chemicals, which the brain detects and reacts to.
While researchers are still sorting out the nitty-gritty details concerning how the brain and gut interact, Mayer says what hasbeen established so far is that the brain does respond to changes in the microbiome. And accordingly, changes in the microbiome seem to be related to sleep.
Beneficial Bacteria Supply Natural Sleep Aids
It takes a lot of natural chemicals to kick off and sustain restorative sleep, each chiming in at the right time and in sufficient quantities. And for many of these crucial chemicals, the supply chain starts in your gut. Thats because one of the most important jobs of probiotic bacteria is neurotransmitter production.
Take serotonin, for example. Most people know it as the feel-good neurotransmitter but what they may not know is that up to 90% of serotonin is produced in the gut, not the brain. Another little known fact: Serotonin plays an important role in the transition to REM sleep, the fifth stage necessary for restorative sleep. And by increasing serotonin supplies, adding quality gut support to your daily lifestyle can help you sleep more soundly.
Probiotic bacteria also help keep cortisol levels in check, which is critical for slow wave sleep. Feeling stressed out can bump up cortisol levels, which can put your body on high alert, making it extra hard to fall or stay asleep. So by keeping cortisol under control, probiotics can help you get the restorative sleep you need.
Then theres GABA , which calms nerve activity so your brain and body can relax enough to fall asleep. In fact, many sleep aids work by increasing GABA levels something probiotics in your gut do naturally. Without enough GABA, you can wake more easily, and miss out on that vital slow wave sleep.
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Which Probiotics Are Good To Buy For Sleep
Not sure which capsules to try? Check out our list of the best gut-healing probiotics for women over 50. That way you can rest easier and get additional gut health perks like an energy boost and clearer skin.
As for me, Ill definitely be adding a probiotic supplement into my diet to help me get my rest at night!
Probiotic’s May Lower Inflammation
Sometimes after a surgery or after a physical injury the pain may make it difficult to relax enough to fall asleep. According to this study, there is some evidence that Probiotic’s may have an anti-inflammatory effect on the body.
More specifically the study mentioned that it may help with Inflammatory Bowel Disease. If IBD is keeping you up at night then it may be worth trying Probiotic’s to see if they help or not.
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How Can Prebiotics Help
What are prebiotics and how can they help? Prebiotics, not to be confused with probiotics, are dietary fibres that help to feed your good gut bacteria, creating an ideal environment for friendly gut flora to flourish in. Research has also indicated that dietary probiotics could help to improve your sleep, with one study finding that prebiotics may help to improve NREM and REM sleep after a stressful event.3
Further research is still needed but in his documentary The Truth About: Sleep, Dr Michael Mosely took a prebiotic for five days and measures how its effect on his sleep. At the end of this trial he gave the prebiotic a 9 out of 10 for effectiveness and claimed he was already starting to notice the benefits.4
Probiotics Affect Moods Behavior And Sleep
In a 2019 study, researchers from the University of Verona studied 38 healthy people over a four-month period. The researchers randomly divided the patients into two groups. One group was given a 4 billion CFU blend of probiotic bacteria for six weeks.
The probiotic species were: Bifidobacterium longum
The other group was given a placebo supplement.
Before the study began, each of the subjects was assessed for mood behavior, sleep quality and personality issues. They were also assessed for anxiety, depression and anger. Then after three weeks, the subjects were all tested again for the same parameters. Then at the end of the six weeks, and three weeks after stopping the supplement, the subjects were all tested the same, comparing their scores with before the test.
The researchers found that the group taking the probiotics had significant mood improvements. They also had significantly reduced levels of depression, anger and fatigue.
The probiotics group also reported better sleep after taking the probiotics.
The tests that were given to each subject included:
Leiden Index of Depression Sensitivity-Revised Test State Trait Anxiety Inventory Beck Depression Inventory Profile of Mood State Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index
Study results showing how probiotics improve moods, and reduce anger and depression. The black is the probiotic group.
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Bacteria In The Brain
In November of 2018, Dr. Rosalinda Roberts and fellow researchers at the University of Alabama in Birmingham disclosed their research findings that show clear evidence of healthy brains incubating probiotic bacteria.
Dr. Roberts is a professor of Psychiatry and the Director of the Alabama Brain Collection. She and her associate researchers published a study abstract at Neuroscience and discussed her findings during their annual meeting.
The study tested postpartum brain samples . These included both human brains and mice brains. Utilizing special electron microscopes, they found 34 cases where the healthy brains were hosting bacteria. They found substantial quantities of the mostly rod-shaped bacteria in the substantia nigra, hippocampus and prefrontal cortex.
Most probiotics are rod-shaped bacteria.
The scientists also found bacteria in other parts of brain tissues, including the striatum, and within intracellular tissues, dendrites, myelin axons and glial cells. Abundant numbers were found within the blood-brain barrier cells.
The researchers virtually eliminated the potential for contamination and noted that hosted brains did not show any signs of inflammation. This would be the case if the bacteria were damaging the brain.
The researchers reported:
The previous speculation the researchers are identifying:
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Restorative Sleep Is Within Reach
If youd like to bask in a full night of deep restorative sleep, proven gut support can help you get there. Of course, not all gut support products are created equal…
This is one area where Just Thrive Probiotic can be such a game changer. It contains a combination of four superior spore-form probiotic strains that you wont find anywhere else. Not only does each of these strains arrive 100% alive to your gut to support healthy hormone levels and neurotransmitter production, they all bring unique health benefits to the mix:
- Bacillus Subtilis HU58 supports immune and cardiovascular health
- Bacillus Indicus HU36 manufactures essential and highly absorbable antioxidants directly in the intestines, where they are best used by your body
- Bacillus Coagulans tames inflammation throughout the body, especially in the digestive tract
- Bacillus Clausii protects other beneficial bacteria from assault by antibiotics and environmental toxins
Try Just Thrive Probiotic today, and get ready to enjoy the deep, restorative sleep tonight.
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