Not getting enough sleep? Maybe the problem is inside your stomach.
Not getting enough sleep? Maybe the problem is inside your stomach.

Sleeping on your stomach? Gut health linked to insomnia

CAN'T sleep at night and finding it hard to work out why?

Maybe you just need to go on gut instinct. Literally.

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Scientists are beginning to scratch the surface on whether gut health plays a part in our ability to get a quality night's sleep after uncovering links between sleep deprivation and eating habits.

"This is an embryonic field right now in the annals of sleep research," Center for Human Sleep Science at the University of California director Matt Walker told The Guardian.

"We know an enormous amount about the relationship between a lack of sleep and appetite, obesity and weight gain, as well as aspects of insulin resistance and glucose regulation. What we don't fully understand yet is the role of the microbiome in sleep."

Research has found sleep deprivation increases obesity, affects control of food intake and impulse control - leaving bleary-eyed people unable to control the amount, or what, they are eating, causing them to pack on extra weight.

Having a healthy gut doesn't mean you have to give up your treats - dark chocolate is the perfect complement to a well-balanced insides.
Having a healthy gut doesn't mean you have to give up your treats - dark chocolate is the perfect complement to a well-balanced insides.

The link between gut health and sleep could also affect mood and mental health issues such as depression.

But while researchers delve into the science, there are steps you can take to find a healthier gut and, in the process, a better night's sleep.

Experts suggest taking probiotics, such as yoghurt or dark chocolate, and prebiotics, found in a range of raw vegetables. Eating more fibre, berries and quality cheeses, switching from coffee to green tea and adding nuts and seeds to your diet can also contribute to healthy gut.

Eating routine can also be contributing factor - mainly don't eat just before you hit the sack and if you're a sweet-tooth who delights in desert, add some low-glycaemic index (GI) foods (fruits, grains) into the mix.


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