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6 steps to a great night’s sleep

Trouble sleeping? You’re not alone! 36% of UK adults struggle to get to sleep on a weekly basis, and almost 1 in 5 have trouble falling asleep every single night.1

Sleep and mental wellbeing are linked; neuroscientists consider sleep as one of the pillars of health and wellbeing.2 A lack of quality snooze-time increases your chances of anxiety and depression, according to the mental health charity Mind.3

Lack of adequate sleep also impairs your ability to make healthy decisions about food.4 Every hour of restorative sleep you miss out on makes the risk of type 2 diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease go up.5, 6 Poor sleep also increases the risk of neurodegenerative conditions like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s.7

Get 30% OFF our ‘ Good Sleep Package’ here

Based on the scientific evidence available, here are 6 safe and natural steps to improve your nighttime sleep: 

1. Drink goat’s milk kefir. 

Why? Because peptides (small proteins) in goat’s milk kefir help improve sleep quality.8 The benefits reported in clinical research are down to 2 key molecules: 

  • Alpha-lactalbumin. Goat’s milk is rich in α-lactalbumin, protein known to help promote sleep quality and duration.9 Goat milk has double the amount as cow’s milk.10
  • Tryptophan. Your sleep is controlled by something called serotonin, 90% of which is made in the gut. Stress, environmental toxins, antibiotics, and sugar can wipe out the friendly bacteria that produce serotonin in your system, affecting your ability to get that much-needed sleep you crave.11 To create serotonin, your body also needs an essential amino acid – tryptophan.12 Chuckling Goat Kefir contains both tryptophan  which has been shown to increase morning alertness and attention,13 as well as live bacteria to re-populate your gut. 
  • Drinking kefir also promotes gut microbial diversity, which boosts both sleep quality and quality of life. Our kefir contains the following three strains of lactobacillus, which have been shown to aid sleep: 
  • Lactobacillus plantarum improves sleep quality in insomniacs and reduces depression symptoms.14
  • Lactobacillus helveticus helps over 60s sleep better.15
  • Lactobacillus paracasei improves reduces stress and anxiety and promotes restorative sleep.16

2. Take Ashwagandha

Ashwagandha has been used in the Ayurvedic traditional medicine system for centuries. Recent studies report that ashwagandha supplements work as an effective remedy for insomnia.17, 18 The polyphenols in ashwagandha feed your gut microbes, which then complete the interaction between your gut and your brain.19

3. Nourish your gut bugs with diet and exercise

Your gut bacteria influence your circadian rhythms, the patterns of biological activity during day and night. They affect sleep patterns, as well as cognitive function, brain development, memory formation, and mental health.20 A diverse gut microbiome supports good sleep.21 You can support diversity by eating different fruit, veg, nuts, seeds, pulses, and whole grains every day. Engaging in regular physical activity will help too. You can read more about this in our post https://www.chucklinggoat.co.uk/the-gut-fitness-connection/ 

4. Drink Sing Me To Sleep Tea

This is our very own completely 100% natural, loose-leaf herbal tea containing lavender, hops, valerian, and chamomile.

Cover 1 TBSP of the herbs with 3 cups of boiled water, lid, and steep for 15 minutes. Strain and drink 1 cup, 2 hours before bedtime, and another cup 1 hour before bedtime. Reserve the third cup to drink in case you wake at night.

5. Create a relaxing bedtime routine

Think of your time before bed as a way of unwinding and soothing the mind – much like a child’s bedtime! Switch your mobile to ‘Night Shift’, to minimise blue light, and avoid screens altogether 2 hours before bed. Run a bath, and use the Calm-Down Goats Milk Soap and Kefir Lotion. The Calm-Down skincare range contains lavender essential oil which works as a natural sedative, increasing relaxation and helping you drift off into a peaceful slumber.

6. Go to bed/wake up at the same time every day

Sleep is regulated by your internal body clock; the circadian rhythm. Your circadian rhythm is controlled by your gut bugs, and these guys LOVE regularity! A consistent bedtime and morning routine can help reinforce the circadian rhythm and keep mental, biological, and emotional health in check.22 This helps in keeping our system strong and energised.

Get 30% OFF our ‘ Good Sleep Package’ here

The Goats wish you sweet dreams! 

Questions? Talk to a Nutritional Therapist on live chat!

References

  1. FormulateHealth - " Insomnia Statistics UK 2021: How Many People Have Sleep Problems?".
    link to articlehttps://www.formulatehealth.com/blog/insomnia-statistics-uk-how-many-people-have-sleep-problems
  2. Sleep medicine clinics - "Sleep, Health, and Society". Written by Grandner M. A. on March 12, 2017
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28159089/
  3. Mind - "How to cope with sleep problems".
    link to articlehttps://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/sleep-problems/about-sleep-and-mental-health/
  4. American journal of lifestyle medicine - "The Role of Sleep in the Control of Food Intake". Written by Shechter, A., Grandner, M. A., & St-Onge, M. P. on August 6, 2014
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/27065757/
  5. Current cardiology reviews - "Sleep duration as a risk factor for cardiovascular disease- a review of the recent literature". Written by Nagai, M., Hoshide, S., & Kario, K. on February 6, 2010
    link to articlehttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2845795/
  6. Current opinion in clinical nutrition and metabolic care - "Sleep and obesity". Written by Beccuti, G., & Pannain, S. on April 22, 2013
    link to articlehttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3632337/
  7. Frontiers in neuroscience - "Circadian and Sleep Dysfunctions in Neurodegenerative Disorders-An Update". Written by Fifel, K., & Videnovic, A. on January 18, 2021
    link to articlehttps://www.frontiersin.org/articles/10.3389/fnins.2020.627330/full
  8. International journal of environmental research and public health - "The Effects of Milk and Dairy Products on Sleep: A Systematic Review". Written by Komada, Y., Okajima, I., & Kuwata, T. on December 16, 2020
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/33339284/
  9. Nutrition reviews - "Applications for α-lactalbumin in human nutrition". Written by Layman, D. K., Lönnerdal, B., & Fernstrom, J. D. on June 1, 2018
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/29617841/
  10. EFSA - "Opinion of the Scientific Panel on Dietetic products, nutrition and allergies [NDA] related to the evaluation of goats' milk protein as a protein source for infant formulae and follow-on formulae". March 10, 2004
    link to articlehttps://www.efsa.europa.eu/en/efsajournal/pub/30
  11. CBC Life - "How and why waking up at the same time every day can improve your health". Written by Nicole Mahabir on October 16, 2017
    link to articlehttps://www.cbc.ca/life/wellness/how-and-why-waking-up-at-the-same-time-everyday-can-improve-your-health-1.4357391
  12. Nutrients - "Many Faces of Kefir Fermented Dairy Products: Quality Characteristics, Flavour Chemistry, Nutritional Value, Health Benefits, and Safety". Written by Farag, M. A., Jomaa, S. A., El-Wahed, A. A., & El-Seedi, A. on January 28, 2020
    link to articlehttps://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/12/2/346/htm
  13. The American journal of clinical nutrition - "Evening intake of alpha-lactalbumin increases plasma tryptophan availability and improves morning alertness and brain measures of attention". Written by Markus, C. R., Jonkman, L. M., Lammers, J. H., Deutz, N. E., Messer, M. H., & Rigtering, N. on May 5, 2005
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15883425/
  14. Nutrients - "Effects of Lactobacillus plantarum PS128 on Depressive Symptoms and Sleep Quality in Self-Reported Insomniacs: A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Pilot Trial". Written by Ho, Y. T., Tsai, Y. C., Kuo, T., & Yang, C. on August 17, 2021
    link to articlehttps://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/13/8/2820/htm
  15. European journal of clinical nutrition - "The effect of Lactobacillus helveticus fermented milk on sleep and health perception in elderly subjects". Written by Yamamura, S., Morishima, H., Kumano-go, T., Suganuma, N., Matsumoto, H., Adachi, H., Sigedo, Y., Mikami, A., Kai, T., Masuyama, A., Takano, T., Sugita, Y., & Takeda, M. on September 12, 2007
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/17851460/
  16. Neurobiology of stress - "Lacticaseibacillus paracasei Lpc-37® improves psychological and physiological markers of stress and anxiety in healthy adults: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled and parallel clinical trial (the Sisu study)". Written by Patterson, E., Griffin, S. M., Ibarra, A., Ellsiepen, E., & Hellhammer, J. on November 24, 2020
    link to articlehttps://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S2352289520300679
  17. Cureus - "Efficacy and Safety of Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera) Root Extract in Insomnia and Anxiety: A Double-blind, Randomized, Placebo-controlled Study". Written by Langade, D., Kanchi, S., Salve, J., Debnath, K., & Ambegaokar, D. on September 28, 2019
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31728244/
  18. Journal of ethnopharmacology - "Clinical evaluation of the pharmacological impact of ashwagandha root extract on sleep in healthy volunteers and insomnia patients: A double-blind, randomized, parallel-group, placebo-controlled study". Written by Langade, D., Thakare, V., Kanchi, S., & Kelgane, S. on August 17, 2020
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/32818573/
  19. PloS one - "16S rRNA gene profiling and genome reconstruction reveal community metabolic interactions and prebiotic potential of medicinal herbs used in neurodegenerative disease and as nootropics". Written by Peterson, C. T., Sharma, V., Iablokov, S. N., Albayrak, L., Khanipov, K., Uchitel, S., Chopra, D., Mills, P. J., Fofanov, Y., Rodionov, D. A., & Peterson, S. N. on March 19, 2019
    link to articlehttps://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30889210/
  20. Nutrients - "Sleep and Microbiome in Psychiatric Diseases.". Written by Wagner-Skacel, J., Dalkner, N., Moerkl, S., Kreuzer, K., Farzi, A., Lackner, S., Painold, A., Reininghaus, E. Z., Butler, M. I., & Bengesser, S. on July 23, 2020
    link to articlehttps://www.mdpi.com/2072-6643/12/8/2198/htm
  21. PloS one - "Gut microbiome diversity is associated with sleep physiology in humans". Written by Smith, R. P., Easson, C., Lyle, S. M., Kapoor, R., Donnelly, C. P., Davidson, E. J., Parikh, E., Lopez, J. V., & Tartar, J. L. on October 17, 2019
    link to articlehttps://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6779243/
  22. CBC Life - "How and why waking up at the same time every day can improve your health". Written by Nicole Mahabir on October 16, 2017
    link to articlehttps://www.cbc.ca/life/wellness/how-and-why-waking-up-at-the-same-time-everyday-can-improve-your-health-1.4357391

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