Optimal Sleep Position for Health

I used to be a dedicated left-side sleeper, but a recent injury forced me to switch to sleeping exclusively on my right side. Soon after, I began experiencing heartburn at night. Upon seeing a viral TikTok post from a herbal practitioner claiming that sleeping on your left side is best for gastric health, I started to wonder if this could be the cause of my discomfort.

Some research shows that the side you sleep on can indeed affect your health. According to gastroenterologist Ali Rezaie, MD, sleeping on your left side can benefit your digestive system, especially if you suffer from acid reflux. However, there is also evidence suggesting that left-side sleeping may not be ideal for cardiovascular health, particularly in individuals with heart conditions.

Overall, the answer to the “which side” question varies depending on whether you have specific health conditions. For example, left-side sleeping may be beneficial for those with heartburn or acid reflux, while right-side sleeping could be more protective for individuals with heart failure. Additionally, left-side sleeping may be crucial for pregnant individuals in their third trimester.

Side sleeping, in general, has its health benefits, such as reducing snoring and sleep apnea as compared to back sleeping. It may also support your digestive health, help ease aches and pains, and improve breathing at night.

In conclusion, while there is little evidence to suggest that you should sleep on one side versus the other for optimal health, side sleeping, in general, has numerous health benefits. Ultimately, the most important factor in supporting overall health is the quality of your sleep.

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