A good night’s sleep is critical for your overall health. Getting enough sleep affects your mental health, energy, and attitude. And, the position you sleep on affects your organs’ alignment and function. Experts reveal that left-side sleeping is the best for your overall health. So, why should you sleep on the left side?
Why left side sleeping matters.
Left side sleeping affects your organs’ function. Ayurveda, a Vedic science that includes yoga, suggests that left side sleeping improves your health. Ayurveda emphasizes bringing the body into balance so it can heal itself. Certified Ayurvedic Therapist Dr. John Drouillard says that left side sleeping posture aids your primary organs including the following:
Helping your lymphatic system’s drainage of waste in your brain
Improving your heart pumping of blood
Aiding your intestinal function
Improving your digestion
Supporting your spleen
Boosting the circulation around your body
Draining of your liver and gallbladder
Here is a breakdown of specific reasons to sleep on the left.
1 – Lymphatic drainage
Your lymphatic system assists your body’s tissues and organs to remove toxins and waste. Its primary function is to move lymph, which contains infection-fighting white blood cells all around your body. Health problems occur when lymph fluid doesn’t drain properly, resulting in a buildup of waste and toxins. Lying on your left side while you sleep allows gravity to help the fluid drain to where it should go. After the lymph fluid is purified, it drains into the left side of the heart.
2 – The heart pumps blood better
Left side sleeping helps your heart pump better. Your heart is on your left side. When you sleep on the left-hand side, the blood from the most prominent artery in your heart, the aorta, flows down to your abdomen. Lying on your left side allows gravity to help your heart work more efficiently.
3 – Bowel function become more efficient
Your large intestine dumps waste into your colon–and that is on your left side. Left side sleeping aids your intestines position away from other organs, which allows it to eliminate waste thoroughly.
4 – Spleen health
Your spleen is part of the lymphatic system on the left side of your body. The spleen functions as a filter for the blood in your immune system. The old red blood cells get reused in your spleen. Platelet and white blood cells are also stored in your spleen. Your spleen fights bacterial infections in your body, such as pneumonia and meningitis. Sleeping on the left side allows your spleen to work more efficiently.
5 – Liver and gallbladder
Your liver and gallbladder are on the right side of your body. Sleeping on your left side promotes bile secretion to flow into your stomach and pancreas on your left side. Liver congestion or a buildup of toxins can cause health problems.
6 – Digestion improvements
Left side sleeping eases acid reflux and heartburn. It improves your digestion, which in turn gives you energy. Try lying on your side after you eat. This posture will help your body digest the meal and make you less sleepy from eating.
7 – A healthier pregnancy
Researchers at the Veteran’s General Hospital-Taipei found that left side sleeping was most beneficial for women who are late into their pregnancy because the left side sleeping position assisted their cardiac vagal activity. This posture helped lower their blood pressure and generally aided their heart.
8 – Snoring and sleep apnea decreases
Sleeping on your left side prevents snoring and sleep apnea. Lying on either side is better than sleeping on your back because side sleeping allows you to breathe easier.
9 – Fewer bouts with Gastroesophageal Reflux Disease
According to Dr. Matthew Edlund, M.D. patients who suffer from GERD should sleep on their left side. Sleeping on their left side can increase symptoms, which makes them uncomfortable, so they wake up a lot at night.
acid reflux caused by diet and sleep
Train yourself to left side sleep
When you go to bed, you may start the night on your left side, but typically most people don’t stay in a single position all night. So, if you wake up and find yourself on your right side, turn back onto your left side to resume your sleep to ensure you get the best health benefits.
When is left side sleeping not right for you?So, even though left side sleeping is healthy for most people, some people shouldn’t sleep on their left side.
Congestive Heart Failure
Researchers at the Sleep Research Laboratory of the Toronto Rehabilitation Institute found that congestive heart failure patients spontaneously slept on their right sides during the night. This finding suggests that these patients do this to avoid the discomfort of their enlarged heart’s beat and to help blood flow issues.