Your Gut Says Sideways
Here at Sirius Sleeper we make pillows, but our big mission is to improve your health through its most powerful key: good sleep.
To do this, we make a wealth of information available to you about proper sleep hygiene—even as we make high-tech pillows that help you rest better on your side.
What’s the bigger picture?
We’re convinced left side-sleeping is best for all humanity (!).
Yes, we know that vision’s rather grand, but science agrees.
We’re glad that India’s ancient art of medicine, Ayurveda, has said this, like, forever, but a fusillade of scientific studies endorse keeping your left side low when you duck for cover every night, too.
We’ll examine more data in later blogs, but today, let’s just focus on how left-side sleep affects one prime human concern: food.
It’s scientifically proven that left-side sleeping enhances digestion in a multitude of ways.
There’s many aspects to this, but let’s just look at three.
1. Your food moves in a “peristaltic wave” through the digestive tract and, hence, this “chyme”—as it’s called—proceeds more efficiently from the large intestine to the descending colon if it can abide by gravity rather than fight it—and lying on your left side permits this to happen. (Getting all that chyme efficiently transited through your alimentary canal also augurs morning bowel movements—another Ayurvedic recommendation for superior health.)
Long ago, when I first learned yoga, my teacher said dozing on my left improved food’s movement through my system.
I experimented, and found it to be true.
I was glad to learn later that science also approves!
2) Left-side sleeping permits the stomach and pancreas to hang naturally (since our stomach is built toward the body’s left side).
This helps the pancreas do its duty without being hemmed-in, making it simple for it to excrete enzymes that assist digestion.
With this input, an optimal portion of the chyme’s nutrients are broken down for your body as the peristaltic wave moves on and on and on.
Scientists are still speculative about the reason, but two plausible theories are:
a) The lower esophageal sphincter, between the stomach and the esophagus, naturally closes when we rest on our left edge, and,
b) Left-side sleeping keeps the juncture between stomach and esophagus above the level of the gut’s churnin’ burnin’ gastric acids.
In our dualistic world sometimes it’s better to avoid the unifocal; the answer to this sphincter/juncture debate might just be “both.”
Have we won you over yet?
Are you ready to join the left-side conga line toward bedtime?
Maybe you sleep in another position now, and were wondering how to seize the night through good left-lateral habits.
Help from Sirius Sleeper is on the way.
Our body pillows can be propped in a number of different positions to help you somersault to stage left.
Check them out here and use the code DIGEST for 10% off if you decide to buy.
And we’ll see you on sleeps’ south side—after a night that’s restful—and digestful
Just making sleep better,