The next time your digestive tract has you feeling bloated and uncomfortable, grab a mat, get on the floor and try a few yoga poses.
Known to enhance physical and mental wellbeing, recent studies point to yoga as an effective practice for improving digestion and, more specifically, managing irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Several studies published by the National Institute of Health have shown that people with IBS experience significantly fewer symptoms and report improved quality of life after participating in a yoga program for six months.
One of the best things about yoga is its accessibility. It requires minimal space or equipment, and there are a lot of in person and online class options. You can also practice on your own - no class required! In this post we are breaking down 5 easy yoga poses - also known as asanas - that support digestion. Each pose has both mechanical and systemic benefits. Poses that gently stretch, twist or compress your body stimulate the abdominal muscles and encourage stool or gas to move down the intestinal tract. When combined with deep breathing, the postures ease tension and reduce stress (which often trigger digestive discomfort).
To ease abdominal discomfort and maintain digestive health practice these asanas at the beginning or end of your day, or at least 2-3 hours after a meal. Hold each pose for 8-10 rounds of breath.
PAVANA MUKTASANA - Wind Relieving Pose
Strengthens abdominal muscles, releases tension in the digestive tract.
Ardha Matsyendrasana - Seated Twist
Releases trapped gas and stimulates liver function.
Marjariasana - Cat Cow
Alternatively compresses and lengthens the intestines.
Balasana - Child’s Pose
Releases tension from the body and eases constipation
Supta Matsyendrasana - Reclined Spinal Twist
Massages abdominal organs, strengthens spine and reduces constipation.
https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/26086986/ https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/yoga-benefits-beyond-the-mat https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/yoga-for-constipation#TOC_TITLE_HDR_1 https://www.artofliving.org/us-en/yoga-health-and-wellness-yoga-for-digestion