Yoga Poses for Digestion; Stress and digestive problems, in today’s time, are on the rise – either due to eating too quickly or eating too much due to emotional stress. As a result, this has led to an increased rate of digestive problems – bloating, gastrointestinal disorder, indigestion, acidity, and constipation – that have surprisingly become very common.
“The root cause of all disorders is due to poor digestion” – According to Ayurveda.
On the other hand, the digestive fire (Agni in Hindi) in our system is responsible for metabolizing all our meals. Thus, it is important to keep it strong and active as it helps to create healthy tissues and eliminates waste and toxins from our body efficiently. Hence, the most effective treatment and solution to keep digestive problems at bay is Yoga. Different yoga poses for digestion stimulate and soothe the nervous system that helps to decrease and reduce your stress levels – the number one reason for the cause of digestive system diseases.
Thus, with a few twists, bends and stretches coupled with deep breathing will help in aiding digestion and bloating. I am listing 6 easy yoga poses for digestion that can be done by beginners as well as regular yoga practitioners.
6 Yoga Poses for Digestion and Bloating
1. Seated Forward Bend Pose (Paschimottanasana)
This simple stretch yoga pose not only stretches your back but lengthens your spine as well as curing you of chronic back pain. However, it also aids as a great yoga pose for digestion when you feel bloated.
The forward bend adds pressure on to your abdominal organs helping to massage it internally and letting the digestive juices flow through easily. Moreover, this yoga pose for digestion is a big relief to those suffering from constipation and flatulence.
Seated Forward Bend pose also works on shredding your abdominal fat if you are struggling to lose weight around your abdomen.
2. Cat-Cow Pose (Marjaryasana-Bitilasana) – Yoga for Digestive System Disease
When you eat heavy meals made mostly of carbs, it generates acidity and gas in your abdomen which puts pressure on your lower back. Ever wondered why your lower back starts hurting after a heavy meal? Well, this is the reason. So, if you have a had a large helping of fries and a whole pizza to yourself, then you know where the digestive problems arise from.
Practising Cat-Cow yoga pose for digestion will massage your abdominal muscles, lengthen your intestines and bring oxygenated blood to the epithelial cells. These cells are the reason why you have a healthy gut.
Furthermore, this two-pose combo is an accessible backbend yoga pose (asana) for back pain that stretches and mobilizes the spine.
How to do the Cat-Cow pose –
- Bring yourself on all fours with a hip-width distance between your knees and your shoulders.
- For Cat pose – take a deep breath and gently curve your spine upward, arching your back. Then, drop your head down, as if you are looking at your belly button. Exhale out and hold the pose for a few seconds. This abdominal pull will gently massage your abdominal muscles to relieve digestion and bloating.
- Then, move to the Cow pose by lifting your tailbone up, stretching your shoulder blades back and lifting your head up. Hold this pose for 15-30 seconds before moving back to the Cat pose.
- Switching poses will bring your back to its original position and thus, reducing lower back pain and easing indigestion and bloating.
Repeat this yoga pose for digestion for 10 rounds till your stomach feels a little lighter.
3. Garland Pose – Yoga pose for Digestion
Feeling a bit gassy and bloated, then Garland pose is the right yoga pose for digestion. This pose will help you release all the gas out of your system that is blocking your intestines to function normally.
This yoga pose (Asana) is also used by women to give birth in different cultures. They use gravity in helping with the release of the baby.
How to do Garland Pose –
- Squat as low as you can with your feet as wide as your shoulders.
- Rest your elbows on your knees and then, fold your hands in the prayer position.
- As you squat down, take a deep breath in and lengthen your spine and open up your chest wide.
- Exhale out and hold this pose for 15-30 seconds. If you feel any discomfort or pressure especially on your thighs then, do it for 10 seconds only.
To get out of this pose –
- Place your hands on your knees and using your bodyweight, lift yourself up slowly.
- Do not stand up immediately as you might pull a muscle or two.
- Repeat this yoga pose (Asana) for digestion 5-6 times.
4. Bridge Pose (Setu Bandha Sarvangasana)
This mild inversion yoga posture for digestion compresses your abdominal muscles and then brings the organs into their proper alignment. When I say alignment, I mean your organs come in place as they are pushed upwards due to the gas created by the stomach acid. This causes indigestion, bloating and acid-reflux issues.
Furthermore, Bridge pose (Asana), also stimulates your thyroid that has a big hand in improving your metabolism and digestion.
5. Half- Wind Release Pose (Ardha Pawamuktasana)
This yoga pose helps in compressing your colon that allows the stimulation of the nerves to aid the elimination of gas or waste (if constipated).
In the same manner, it also applies pressure on the digestive organs when you bend your legs towards your abdomen. This furthermore helps to activate your digestive system and relieves any traces of bloating, indigestion and constipation.
How to do the Half-wind Pose –
- Lie flat on your back and as you inhale in, bring your right knee towards your chest keeping your left leg flat on the ground.
- Hold your right shin with both your hands and bring it closer to your chest.
- Then, hold this pose for 1 to 2 minutes. Repeat this pose with your left leg.
- Continue to do this yoga pose for digestion for 5 to 6 rounds alternating each leg.
This will help you release all the flatulence and gas out of your blocked system.
6. Triangle Pose (Trikonasana) – Yoga for Digestive System
Triangle Pose in Yoga is an all solution to your digestive problems. How you breathe during this pose is what matters the most. As you breathe in and bend down, the pressure on your abdomen works towards nourishing your intestines. As a result, giving you a healthy gut and improving your digestion.
Consequently, the Triangle pose of Yoga also helps to tone your abdominal muscles giving it a good stretch. This yoga pose for digestion – further stimulates your appetite and hunger pangs, energizes the liver and intestinal tract, thus, helping to alleviate constipation and bloating.
Read our article on How to do the Triangle Pose Step by Step and its multiple Benefits
As per Fiona Tuck nutritionist and Yoga Teacher from Australia “Yoga can aid digestion, elimination (constipation) and bloating by increasing the circulation and energy to these areas. Yoga works on a physical level by stimulating the internal organs via various asanas (positions).
Thus, not only does Yoga helps tone and give the muscles a nice stretch – it also helps stimulation of the endocrine glands for effective functioning. As a result, your digestive system is oiled which enables a smooth and improved digestive system.
Moreover, any day yoga is a better healing alternative than all the antacid pills that we constantly keep popping in. Yoga has no side effects but instead offers more health benefits for healthy well-being. In good spirits, keep that tummy happy and dive into the world of yoga that only offers healing, happiness, and mindfulness.