8 Yoga Asanas for Better Digestion and Gut Health
- Treat your gut well by practicing a few poses of yoga for digestion every day
- Practice seated side bend and supine spinal twist to promote digestive health
- Try the knees-to-chest pose of yoga to relieve gas and feel better immediately
Yoga helps your body heal from within and boosts its immunity and functions. This allows you to restrict the ill effects of common issues like digestive problems. Doing yoga for digestion can reduce any constipation and bloating you experience. It increases blood circulation and provides energy to the organs responsible for digestion in your body.
You can practice yoga to relieve gas or do yoga for gastric and acidity issues by just taking a few minutes out of your day. These indoor yoga exercises are easy to do. All you need in terms of yoga equipment is a yoga mat and if possible, two blocks and a strap. Read on to know more about yoga for digestion.
How Yoga Helps With Digestion
Ayurveda regards Agni as the source of nutrition, awareness, and intelligence. There are many expressions of Agni that affect the body and mind. Digestive fire is one of the most important manifestations of Agni. So, the digestive system in this regard is the main hub, which churns out the fire from the food we eat. Digestive problems have a root cause here and start when the digestive tract is unable to extract the fire from the food we eat.
Yoga for gastric problems has the power to rectify your digestive capacity. To put it simply, digestion refers to the process of the breakdown of food to provide your body with nutrients and expel waste products. Improper digestion can lead to gas, bloating, and discomfort, and affect your stool type and frequency. Incomplete digestion is the body’s inability to churn out the nutrients and minerals from food, which leads to deficiencies in the long term and a lot of related ailments.
Yoga for gastric health works towards keeping the gut-brain axis strong and effective. The gut-brain axis is a communication system of nerves and biochemical signals that passes through the blood, connecting the digestive system to the brain. When this system is under stress your gut may show symptoms such as:
- diarrhea and constipation
This stress can be both physical and mental, which yoga can rectify on every level. Unlike medicines that only treat the problem, yoga goes deep to change body’s connection with the mind, letting it heal from every angle.
Yoga For Digestion
To begin your journey towards good gut health, including these indoor yoga exercises in your daily routine.
Seated Twist (Ardha Matsyendrasana)
This move's twisting motion is supposed to increase bowel regularity by assisting the small and large intestines in peristalsis. It aids in the smooth flow of food and waste through the digestive tract.
This yoga posture may also help with bloating.
Step To Do
- You must sit on the floor with your legs straightened out in your front while doing this exercise. Next, bend your left knee and cross it over your right thigh or knee, landing on the floor with your left foot. Throughout the exercise, keep your left foot planted.
- Next, lean softly on your right hip and bend your right knee so that the sole of your right foot faces inward towards your left buttock. You can keep your right leg straight if this is too difficult.
- Put your right elbow outside your left knee while slowly rotating your trunk to the left. Place your left palm to the left of your buttocks on the floor.
- Rotate your neck slightly to glance over your left shoulder.
Maintain this position for 4-5 deep breaths. Observe how your spine lengthens with each inhalation as you take deep breaths. Then, switch sides and do it again.
Cobra Pose (Bhujangasana)
Snake Pose imitates the upright pose of a cobra. Cobra pose helps stretch your belly muscles improve your posture and aids digestion in general.
Step To Do
- Lie on your stomach with your feet hip-width apart and your palms flat on the floor by your lower ribs, elbows bent.
- Extend your feet till the tops of your feet are in contact with the ground.
- Press your hands together and slowly raise your head and chest. As you straighten your arms, keep your elbows slightly bent. Roll back and down your shoulders. Lifting your sternum rather than your chin is the goal.
- Keep your pelvis on the floor and pay attention to lifting your chest and upper back forward.
- Maintain a modest upward gaze without overextending your neck or elevating your chin. Hold for 4-5 seconds.
Bow Pose (Dhanurasana)
Bow Pose is inspired by the shape of an archer's bow. It extends your back support and helps with digestion, constipation, and menstrual cramps.
Step To Do
- Lie on your stomach, legs straight, and palms up, with your hands by your sides.
- Bring your knees back and your feet as close to your buttocks as possible. Reach back and grip your ankles gently. Make sure your knees are no broader than your hips.
- Bring your feet closer to your torso and lift your thighs slightly off the floor. Lift your chest and head up at the same time. Maintain a flat pelvis on the floor.
- Take 4-5 deep breaths. If you're experiencing trouble breathing, try a light stretch that's comfortable for you. Some folks may want to omit this step.
Belly Twist (Jathara Parivartanasana)
It is a straightforward twist that people claim aids digestion by boosting circulation and encouraging intestinal peristalsis.
Step To Do
- Start by lying on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the ground, and arms extended outward. Shift your hips to the right by about an inch (2.5 cm).
- Keep your knees and feet together as you lift your feet off the ground.
- Rotate your hips to the left and bring your bowed legs with you. Maintain a flat upper back on the ground. Allow gravity to pull your legs closer to the earth.
- Take 4-5 deep breaths.
- With your hands, gently return your hips to a neutral posture and pull your knees to your chest. Then gradually straighten your legs.
Parsva Sukhasana or Seated Side Bend
To begin with, sit on the yoga mat in a cross-legged position, with your hands touching the floor at your sides. Now, raise your left arm straight into the air and lean towards your right side. When maintaining this position, keep your right arm on the floor facing outward. Hold this for 4–5 breaths and then switch sides and repeat. This position boosts digestion and is a good pose of yoga for the digestive system. You can practice this asana after a meal in case you are feeling heavy.
Supta Matsyendrasana or Supine Spinal Twist
Lie down on your back on the yoga mat. To start this pose, bend both knees with the soles of your feet flat on the floor. Now lift your hips 1–2 inches off the ground and shift them to the right gently, a little outside the body. Then, lower your hips back to the floor and straighten your left leg and grab your right knee and bring it towards your chest. While keeping your left leg straight, gently rotate to the left and bring your right knee over your left. Instead of forcing your knee to the ground, allow it to gently drape over your left leg. Next, bring your right arm back and place it straight on the floor, perpendicular to your body. Take your left hand and gently press on your right knee for a greater stretch. Alternatively, leave your left arm straight. Maintain this pose for 4-5 breaths and then repeat on the other side. This pose improves digestion and reduces bloating and constipation.
Apanasana or Knees to Chest
To do this pose, you will have to lie on your back, in a resting position, with your legs straight. Now, slowly bend your knees and bring them toward your chest, using your arms to pull them closer. Hold this position for 4–5 deep breaths. This position is good for your large intestine and promotes the right bowel movement.
Marjaryasana-Bitilasana or Cat-Cow
A fusion of two yoga poses, cat and cow, this pose helps you stretch your back and belly muscles, which improves circulation and gently massages your digestive organs to promote gut peristalsis. Get on to your hands and knees and align your hips and your wrists with your shoulders and knees. Start the cow pose by tilting your pelvis so that your tailbone goes up and your belly moves down. From here, gently roll your shoulders back and raise your head by looking upward. Hold this position for 4–5 breaths and come back to a neutral pose. Now, start the cow pose, place the tops of your feet on the floor with the soles of your feet facing upward. Tuck in your tailbone, draw your belly button towards your spine and roll your shoulders forward so that you’re arching your back. Gently lower your head and hold here for 4–5 breaths.
Benefits Of Yoga For Digestion
Almost every illness is caused due to poor digestion. Digestion is crucial in ensuring that the food we eat is processed efficiently. If our digestion is weak, no matter how much healthy food we consume, our bodies will not accumulate and absorb the nutrients from the meal. Yoga is a natural and excellent way to improve and maintain a healthy digestive tract.
Yoga asanas include several postures that can assist a person's digestion. Yoga stimulates the digestive tract, increasing appetite and balancing metabolic activity. Yoga asanas stretch and massage the muscles in the abdomen, allowing food to pass more efficiently through the digestive tract. Yoga is highly beneficial in relieving constipation and promoting regular bowel movements. It boosts digestion by boosting blood flow to the digestive organs and removes tension, and helps to quiet the mind. Finally, yoga prevents fat accumulation and flushes out the poisons that collect due to unhealthy dietary habits. Some of the yoga asanas listed below can improve an individual's digestion.
Precautions Tips For Yoga For Digestion
Most people consider yoga to be a safe practice. However, it may not be appropriate for persons who have the following:
• Back or neck injuries
• Are pregnant
• Have high blood pressure
Some yoga teachers provide special classes, such as prenatal yoga.
Furthermore, if you have digestion issues, it is advisable to consult a healthcare practitioner. They might be able to pinpoint the underlying cause.
While yoga may be beneficial, you should not cease other treatments advised by your healthcare professional. Before beginning yoga or any other workout program, it is advisable to consult them.
The best part about choosing yoga for gastric and acidity problems or to boost metabolism is that it has no side effects. By following the right routine, you can reverse the ill effects of gastric problems. To address serious issues, do not hesitate to talk to a specialist near you. Book an online doctor consultation or an in-person appointment on Bajaj Finserv Health. This way you can address symptoms before they worsen.
Please note that this article is solely meant for informational purposes and Bajaj Finserv Health Limited (“BFHL”) does not shoulder any responsibility of the views/advice/information expressed/given by the writer/reviewer/originator. This article should not be considered as a substitute for any medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always consult with your trusted physician/qualified healthcare professional to evaluate your medical condition. The above article has been reviewed by a qualified doctor and BFHL is not responsible for any damages for any information or services provided by any third party.
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