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Sleep & Gut Health

Sleep is a vital component of everyone's overall health and well-being. Sleep is simple but essential as it enables the body to repair and be fit and ready for another day. 

Sleep deficiency can occur if you have one or more of the following:

  • You don't get enough sleep or too much sleep (Everyone is different but an adult should aim for no more or no less than 7 - 9 hours a night)
  • You sleep at the wrong time of day (Shift workers, jet lag, staying up too late / sleeping in)
  • You don't sleep well or get all of the different types of sleep that your body needs
  • You have a sleep disorder that prevents you from getting enough sleep or causes poor quality sleep
Lack of sleep can have a detrimental effect on your wellbeing and can lead to physical and mental health problems, excess weight gain, heart disease, and increased illness duration.

So how is sleep linked to gut health?

The relationship between sleep and the gut microbiome is increasingly seen as a two-way street. Recent research suggests our gut health seems to have an effect on how we sleep. (1) In turn, sleep and circadian rhythms appear to affect the health and diversity of the important bacteria that lives in our gut.  
Lack of sleep can increase stress, which affects the gut. When you don’t get enough sleep, your hormones can become unbalanced, and the stress hormone, cortisol, can rise. This can cause something known as leaky gut—where food and toxins are able to pass through the intestine and into the bloodstream. This can lead to a host of issues including bloating, inflammation, stomach pains, food sensitivities, and changes to the gut microbiome 
Melatonin is a hormone that our bodies make more of during the night, as it helps us fall asleep. Melatonin also helps regulate the movement of ingested food through the gut ensuring optimal absorption of  nutrients, water, and electrolytes . 

How to improve your sleep quality:


Sleep often is the first thing that busy people squeeze out of their schedules. Making time to sleep will help you protect your health and well-being now and in the future.

To improve your sleep habits, it also may help to:

  • Go to bed and wake up at the same time every day. 
  • Try to keep the same sleep schedule on weeknights and weekends. 
  • Use the hour before bed for quiet time. Avoid excessive exercise and bright artificial light, from a TV or phone. The light may signal the brain that it's time to be awake.
  • Avoid heavy and/or large meals within a couple hours of bedtime. 
  • Avoid caffeine.  The effects of caffeine can last as long as 8 hours. So, a cup of coffee, even in the late afternoon, can make it hard for you to fall asleep at night.
  • Spend time outside every day (when possible) and be physically active.
  • Take probiotics.  Research proves that probiotics have a positive effect on mood and sleep quality. (2) Probiotics form an essential part of our Gut Repair Kit.   
Don't panic...the odd late night here and there won't do any harm but if you feel as though your sleep quality needs improving then try some of these tips and let us know how you get on.
Sweet dreams!