11 Amazing Yoga Poses for Improving Digestion
There are many instances when we have faced digestion-related issues in our daily life. The problems are likely due to overeating, eating unhealthy food items, and so on. All these manifests in the form of constipation, bloating, stomach cramps, irritated bowel syndrome, etc.
The first thing that pops in our mind is to run to a doctor or plop down some gastric pills. However, if we get a better option like yoga poses for digestion and relieve these symptoms rather than switching to medicine, won’t it be more acceptable?
The best option, if you are looking forward to a switch from medications to treat your alimentary disorders, is Yoga. Yoga has emerged as a new health trend throughout the globe. While it provides overall wellness and rejuvenation of the body, there are some specific yoga poses that focus on the digestive system.
They help by stimulating the motion of the stomach muscles, intestinal colons, and stimulating the blood flow in the vital digestive organs.
The main function of the digestive stimulating yogas is to increase the movement of the stomach muscles, and with improved circulation, they are able to function properly. The Yoga poses not only help to digest food, but it also ensures that the elimination process is taken care of. This writeup illustrates some beneficial yoga poses for your digestive system (1).
Yoga and digestion improving science
Yoga has emerged as a surreal way to keep your digestive system sound and healthy. Nutritionists are of opinions that there are various yoga poses that aids in the overall process of digestion and elimination. Yoga asanas help to prevent stomach cramps, bloating, by increasing the blood flow in the alimentary canal.
Yoga asanas are known to stimulate the energy levels in the body and helps to create harmony between the digestion and the energy released. Many digestive disorders can be attributed to stress. Yoga is a great way to release stress and tension from the body. It relaxes the mind and also soothes the soul and the body.
The deep breathing accompanied in various yoga poses help to ease out the stress and tension from the abdominal region. Thus, helping to facilitate the smooth functioning of the digestive system.
Yoga poses for digestion
Marjaryasana-Bitilasana is popular as the cat-cow pose for digestion, promoting yoga asanas. It focuses on the stomach and the intestinal areas. It helps to get rid of bloating and pain due to a heavy meal or other intestinal disorders.
- The first step of the cat-cow pose starts when you are on all your four limbs.
- The posture is simple as you need to swivel your spine in an up and down motion like a cat.
- While rotating the spine, round your backside and then arch it like a cow while you constantly breathe.
- This constant rotation of the shoulders and the spine along with arching provides a massaging stimulus to the internal organs of the digestive system.
- The position should be repeated for at least ten times for better results, and you can give a halt if the stretching and expanding are taking a toll on your body.
People suffering from the digestive disorder of Irritated Bowel Syndrome should try out the triangle yoga pose or Trikonasana. The pose provides pressure on the intestinal colons and promotes their movement. It helps to smoothen the process of elimination.
- The pose is quite simple and does not require a yoga mat.
- You can start with standing with your legs stretched far from each other.
- Then, place the right foot in front of your body, while your other foot is rotated towards to make an angle of 45 degrees.
- Then, open and stretch out the arms.
- Start with bringing down the right arm to touch the ground beside your forward food. While the right one touches the ground, raise the left hand over the head to suspend in the air.
- While doing so, make sure your torso is twisted slightly to the left.
- The breathing should be normal during the asana.
- Then after holding the position for a while, twist your upper body in the opposite direction and simultaneously switch the position of your hands.
3. Uttana Shishosana or Extended Puppy Pose
If you face stomach cramps after helping yourself to a heavy scrumptious meal, then this Extended puppy pose is for you. It helps to stretch the belly muscles and provides relief from the cramps. The pose is considered to be a cross between the child pose and the downward-facing dog pose.
- The first step starts with kneeling on the yoga mat.
- Once in kneeling position, fold your body in the forward direction in such a way that the arms are outstretched.
- Avoid resting your thighs and hip on the calf muscles. Instead, push them up in the air towards the sky.
- When your rear is suspended in the air, it will stretch your stomach.
- Finally, put down your head and upper body on the floor and breathe deeply.
- After holding this position for a while, rest your rear on the calf muscle and your feet. Then repeat the same process of stretching.
4. Adho Mukha Svanasana
Here comes one of the most famous digestive yoga poses – the downward-facing dog or the Adho Mukha Svanasana. It is a staple yoga posture famous for its simplicity and elegance.
This pose benefits the stomach by creating a pull on the navel. It also stimulates the intestines to improve digestion.
- Start the downward dog facing pose with stretching on the mat while facing the floor.
- Then with the help of your palms on the ground, retain the plank pose.
- Once you are in the plank pose, slowly push your body weight towards the back of your feet.
- While doing so, stretch your arms, and your whole body will create an upside-down V-shaped structure.
- The pose will massage your intestines while you inhale and exhale.
- While holding the pose, you can rock your body side by side, of in to and fro direction to boost digestion rate.
The Paschimottasana is similar to the simple forward fold you used to practice in your physical education classes. It might look quite modest, but it significantly stretches and lengthens the intestines while massaging them. It aids in a good night slumber with a relaxed mind.
- To start with this subtle pose, sit comfortably on the yoga mat.
- Then stretch your legs in front of your body.
- Then, extend both of your arms forward and slowly try to grab the toes of the stretched out legs and try to touch your knees with your nose. While doing so, try to bend your hips as it will help you to reach the toes.
- If you are not able to touch your toes, restrain it to your knees only.
- Some people might feel it difficult to maintain posture. They can grab a yoga block or a pillow for comfort.
6. Setu Bandha Sarvangasana
Bridge Pose is the common name of Setu Bandha Sarvangasana. The bride pose aids in better digestion by constricting the organs of the alimentary canal. The posture also helps to promote the flow of fresh oxygenated blood to the heart. It prevents us from falling asleep after a heavy meal and keeps obesity at bay.
This is also a good yoga pose for flexibility.
- Stretch out on the yoga mat while lying on your backside.
- The feet should be flat on the ground to make a firm grasp.
- Then, gently thrust the spine and the thoracic region towards the sky, starting with the base of the legs.
- Once the back is well stretched, and the whole back is in the air, hold the position for a while with deep breaths.
- Then gently come back to the previous position and after a few breaths repeat the same process.
7. Ardha Pawamuktasana
When we decode the Sanskrit nomenclature of the asana, it goes by the name of the half gas relief pose. The pose helps to put stress on the ascending and descending colon of the large intestine, thus facilitating excretion. The supine twist is an idle posture for a holiday brunch.
Hemorrhoids or piles can be related to issues with digestion and bowel issues. You can try yoga for piles if you are suffering from this health condition.
- Start this asana with lying on the yoga mat with your head facing the ceiling.
- While lying flat, stretch out your hands and legs. The hands should be stretched outwards and kept aligned with the upper body.
- Then, pull up the right knee towards the upper body and wrap both the hands around it. The grip should be tight enough to hold the knee in place for a while.
- While holding the knee, try to breathe in and out evenly. After few gasps of a deep breath, release the knee and stretch the left leg.
- Then follow the same process with the right leg.
8. Supta Matsyendrasana
The supine twist is the wither term for the Sanskrit name of Supta Matsyendrasana. It is one of the digestion yoga poses that is known to impose pressure on the digestive organs. As a result of the pressure from supine twist pose, bloating, cramps, and general stomach discomfort are cured.
- To start with this pose, one should lie on with their back down on the yoga mat.
- Then, expand both the hands to bring them to the level of your shoulders on the mat.
- The legs should be outstretched, and then pull right knee towards your upper body.
- Then the pointed knee should be turned towards the left side while your torso is firmly hooked to the mat.
- While turning your knee, make sure that the torso twists as it will caress the digestive organs.
- The twisted position should be held for a few minutes with deep breaths, and then the same should be repeated with the left leg.
Shavasana or Corpse pose might seem like a simple and futile yoga pose, but when it comes to digestion, this pose actually works. The corpse pose helps to stimulate the flow of oxygen to all the vital organs, including the digestive organs.
The improved blood flow helps the organs to work more efficiently, and proper digestion takes place.
- The pose is as simple as lying on a yoga mat. One needs to stretch its body while lying on the back.
- The arms should lie beside the body and legs should be outstretched as well.
- Then, emphasize your mind on focusing on your breathing pattern. You can think of your body parts one by one while relaxing and feel the relaxation in the particular body part.
- Concentrate on the breathing pattern, and try to relax your mind.
- The process of deep breathing with calmness will heighten the blood flow to the vital organs in the body.
10. Bow pose
Bow pose helps in promoting digestion by focusing on your stomach muscles. It engages your bum region and stimulates the function of the digestive tract.
- For the boat pose, lie down on the mat with your head facing the ground.
- Then slowly try to lift up your legs up to your knees.
- While your legs are suspended in the air, try to get a hold of your ankles or feet.
- Then lift up your head to form a bow shape.
- While you hold the position for a while, generate a rocking motion as it boosts digestion.
- This position should be held for five inhalations and explanations before resting your body on the ground.
Mayurasana is commonly called the peacock pose and is a popular asana among the yoga experts. The Peacock pose is relatively arduous when compared to the other asanas for good digestion.
But, it is considered as the best pose to facilitate digestion. Experts are of the opinion that peacock pose helps to boost the digestive system. This is one of the best yoga poses for strength.
- The first step for this pose is to kneel down on the yoga mat.
- Then lean your upper body forward, and put the palms on the mat.
- The fingers should be firmly placed on the mat while pointing backward.
- Then gradually stretch each leg to achieve a plank position.
- While you are on the plank position, all the bodyweight should be on the arms.
- Finally, lift up the stretched legs in the air while balancing the weight on your arms. The tension should be on the abdominal muscles, and one should try to hold the posture for about five records with normal breathing.