gut health and sleep

Check The Gut PART 1….Sleep

Gut Health and Sleep. Research has shown that people suffering from poor sleep have poor gut health, and poor gut health influences our sleep. So basically, poor sleep is a product of and a cause of poor gut health. 


Factors Influencing Sleep


Disrupted Sleep Hormones

Studies have shown that the gut microbiome produces and distributes sleep inducing hormones such as dopamine, serotonin, Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) and melatonin. Therefore if the microbiome is unbalanced this then produces an imbalance in the hormones that affect sleep. 


Out of whack gut microbes = out of whack sleep hormones

Take Charge 

  • Stress negatively influences our gut health and our sleep, so managing stress is essential. Try some stretching, yoga, reading or meditation before bed
  • Magnesium is a nutrient used by the body in times of stress to chill us out. Most people are deficient due to the lives that we live. So taking a magnesium bath and/or a good magnesium powder is great for sleep


Poor Digestion

It has been shown that many people who wake during the early hours of the morning and cannot get back to sleep, is a sign that digestion is impaired. Therefore if the gut is not working well, then sleep is disrupted.

Take Charge

  • Move daily to support optimal digestion and sleep
  • Avoid rich, heavy meals for dinner
  • Digestive enzymes taken with evening meals, especially if heavy or rich will support digestion
  • Digestive enzymes have shown to be effective if sleep is broken during the night, to support digestion and therefore help get you back to sleep. So if you wake up between 2-3am and can’t get back to sleep, pop 2x digestive enzymes and this should help


Other Lifestyle Tips:


  • Avoid caffeine and sugar in the afternoon/evening 
  • Turn off all tech 2 hours before bed, or if this is not possible then try blue light glasses. Another option is to setup your phone to reduce/remove blue light at night
  • Reduce: filter out some of the blue light by setting up “night shift mode” for when the sun goes down
  • Remove: you can set a shortcut (ie. press power button 3x) to filter out the blue light, this is what ultimately hinders sleep
  • How to: checkout this website (for iphone) to set them up THL Sleep 
  • Start a bedtime routine hours before bed to prepare your mind and body (like you do a child)
  • Minimise artificial lights as the sun goes down as this is when melatonin starts to naturally rise, so you want to support this not trick your body into thinking it’s not night time



Studies were done, taking groups of people out camping to see the effects of natural lights versus artificial lights on our sleep-wake cycles (circadian rhythm). They found that artificial lights affect our melatonin (sleepy hormone) onset, therefore our circadian rhythm. A shift of circadian melatonin patterns can happen as quickly as over a weekend when exposed to natural vs artificial lighting patterns. 


So if you need an excuse to go camping, this is it 🙂


Love Alissa & Kristyn ❤



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