There has been research suggesting that sleeping on the left side improves your health and also the quality of your sleep. This theory has a link to Ayurveda, a medical concept that started from India.
Sleeping on the left side has many benefits, as it it good for the heart and our general wellbeing. Continue reading below for the benefits of sleeping on the left side:
1. It may relieve back pain
Those suffering from severe back pain may benefit from sleeping on the left side. This is possible because if you sleep on your left side, your spine will be freed from pressure. You will get a sound night sleep if you are comfortable while asleep.
2. It may improve digestion
Thanks to gravity, sleeping on the left side is better than the right side when it comes to digestion. When you sleep on the left side, food waste will easily move from the large intestine into the descending colon, meaning that when you wake up, you are more likely to have a bowel movement. Since our stomach lies on the left side of the body, it will hang naturally when you sleep on the left side.
3. It’s good for your heart
In order to improve circulation to the heart, doctors have been making recommendations to pregnant women to sleep on their left side. This works not just for women, it also works for men and everyone too. As you sleep on the left side, some pressures is taken off the heart, since gravity can help aortic circulation away from the heart, and also lymph drainage towards the heart. However, there are still debates if sleeping on the right or left is best for a healthy heart.
4. It’s ideal for pregnant women
Sleeping on the left side helps pregnant women too. It improves the circulation of blood, and also assist in suppressing the pressure on the back, preventing the liver to be squeezed by the uterus. It also improves the flow of blood to the fetus, kidneys and uterus. This has made doctors to recommend sleeping on the left side to pregnant women.
5. It bolsters the lymphatic system
In the beginning of this article, Ayurveda was mentioned, a medical concept that started from India. This medical concept states that when you sleep on your left side, your body will filter lymph fluids better and also waste through the lymph nodes, since the left side of the body holds most of the lymph. Doctors have also found out that when you sleep on the left side, your body can process waste materials properly from the brain. On the contrary, if you sleep on the right side, the efficiency of the lymphatic system might be decreased.
6. It may reduce heartburn
According to research, lying on the left side has a way of reducing the symptoms of acid reflux. This also is as a result of our stomach lying on the left side. On the other hand, these symptoms may be aggravated by lying on the right side. You can start seeing the results almost immediately, and anytime you are having a heartburn after a meal, try lying down on your left side for 10 minutes.
Some people might not benefit from sleeping on the left side, including those that suffer from carpal tunnel syndrome, sleep apnea, glaucoma, and heart disease. So if you are suffering from an ailment that doesn’t support this sleep position, it will be great if you consult a physician.
How to make the switch
It might take some time to cultivate this habit of sleeping on the left side. Some simple strategies can be of help, such as putting a pillow behind your back to make it difficult for you to roll off your left side while sleeping. Another trick is to try sleeping on your left side on the opposite side of your bed, so that your sleeping orientation won’t look different to you.