Whether you had a huge meal or you suffer from Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD), one thing is certain, bloating and indigestion are not fun. You feel uncomfortable for hours, and most of the medications only offer slight relief. Not to mention, it’s almost impossible to enjoy your food when you’re feeling like something is wreaking havoc in your stomach.
The good news is that there’s a natural way to improve your digestion and gradually do away with the symptoms – yoga. Yoga poses for the digestive system that targets the abdominal organs go a long way in relieving your symptoms.
And the best part? An improved digestive system comes with a burst of energy. So, let’s take a look at the best yoga poses to improve your digestion. Also, yoga increased blood vessel flexibility by 69% and even helped shrink arterial blockages without medications, according to a Harvard report.
See also: 27 Powerful Yoga Poses for Immune System
Table of Contents
Pavanamuktasana, also commonly known as the wind relieving pose, is an effective yoga pose for removing gases from the stomach and relieving stomach ailments. This pose not only improves your digestion by removing gases in your stomach but also strengthens your abdominal muscles.
Practicing Yoga regularly can help elderly people achieve good sleep quality as well as improve quality and quality of life, according to a 2013 study.
How to Do the Pavanamuktasana:
- Lie down on your yoga mat on your back with your legs straight and your toes facing up, keeping your hands straight at your sides.
- Breathe in and lift your legs straight up.
- Bend your knees and slowly bring them to your chest.
- Wrap your arms around your legs close to the knees to keep them as close to the chest as possible.
- If you can, try to bring your knees close to your nose until they touch.
- Hold the pose for at least 30 seconds and return to the original position.
- Repeat a few times.
If you have a lot of gas in your stomach and you’re experiencing constipation symptoms, the paschimottasana, also commonly referred to as the seated forward bend, is the pose for you. This pose massages your organs, thereby offering relief for indigestion symptoms. And if you’re on a weight loss journey, you’ll love the fact that this pose also reduces abdominal fat – hello, bikini body!
Studies show that practicing yoga is a relatively low-risk, high-yield approach to improving overall health.
See also: How To Get Good at Yoga Faster?
How to Do the Paschimottasana:
- Sit on your yoga mat with your legs extended in front. Keep your spine at a 90-degree angle and ensure your hands remain at your sides.
- Maintaining your spine’s position, inhale, and lift your hands right in front of your chest.
- Next, extend your back and slowly bend forward from your hips.
- Keep lowering your back until you’ve touched your toes and your chin is in contact with your thighs.
- Hold the pose for at least one minute and slowly go back to the original position.
- Repeat a few times.
Adho Mukha Svanasana
The Adho Mukha Svanasana, popularly known as the downward-facing dog, is a staple yoga pose, and it’s not hard to see why. This pose is not just good for your digestion. It will do wonders for your entire body. Some of the benefits you get from this pose include:
- Reduced stress
- Stronger arms and legs
- Incredible stretch for your hamstrings, hands, and calves
- Menstrual cramps relief
- Energy boost
How to Do the Adho Mukha Svanasana:
- Start in a plank position and slowly begin lowering your weight towards your feet, ensuring your arms are straight throughout the pose. Lower yourself as far as you can to create an upside-down “V.”
- While lowering your weight towards your feet, ensure you’re broadening your back and massaging your intestines while breathing.
- Rock side to side or back and forth for an even deeper stretch. These extra movements are beneficial for easing indigestion symptoms.
Setu Bandha Saravangasana
The Setu Bandha Saravangasana, also known as the bridge pose, is also an effective pose for compressing internal organs and providing relief. When you’re planning to have that big thanksgiving dinner, and you don’t want to take a nap after, this pose will prove invaluable.
The bridge pose moves fresh blood to your heart, thereby keeping you refreshed even after a big meal. As a result, you remain awake even after taking too much food. The result? You enjoy regular sleep patterns since naps may affect your sleep cycle.
How to Do the Setu Bandha Saravangasana:
- Lie on your yoga mat with both feet flat on the ground. Your back should also be flat on the ground with your hands at your sides.
- Touch your ankles with your hands and slowly raise your back towards the ceiling.
- When your back is completely off the yoga mat, hold the pose for at least 30 seconds, and breathe.
- Repeat a few times.
The Supta Matsyendrasana, commonly known as the spine twist, is also an incredible yoga pose for the digestive system. This pose applies pressure on your digestive organs, thereby relieving discomfort, bloating, and cramping.
Yoga may also lower levels of inflammation and significantly decrease cortisol levels, according to a study published in Oxidative Medicine and Cellular Longevity.
How to Do the Supta Matsyendrasana:
- Start by lying on your yoga mat with your back flat on the mat and your legs extended outward. Your hands should be lying flat on your sides.
- While still maintaining this position, brighten your right knee towards your chest.
- Now, move your bent right knee towards the left, ensuring your left leg remains straight and your shoulders are flat on the mat. Keeping your shoulders on the mat ensures your torso is the only part of your body doing the movements. As a result, the pose is more effective in massaging your organs.
- Hold the position for at least 30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
- Repeat a few times.
Another popular yoga poses beneficial for the digestive system is the Marjaryasana-Bitilasana, commonly referred to as cat-cow. This pose involves a lot of deep breathing, which is crucial for massaging your organs and bringing fresh blood into the epithelial cells responsible for maintaining a healthy gut function.
A three-month yoga retreat reduced inflammation and stress in the body, as found in a recent study issued in Frontiers in Human Neuroscience.
How to Do the Marjaryasana-Bitilasana:
- Begin with your hands positioned beneath your shoulders and your knees straight beneath your hips. Keep your spine parallel to the ground before proceeding to the next step.
- Take a deep breath and lower your belly towards the ground while lifting your chest and hips towards the ceiling. This position is known as the Bitilasana or cow pose. Hold the pose for at least 30 seconds.
- Next, exhale and extend your back towards the ceiling, making sure your gaze is towards your navel and that your hands are straight and pressing into the ground. This position is known as Marjaryasana (cat poise).
- Repeat for 10 rounds.
Grab Your Yoga Mat
When you’re outside looking in, yoga seems like a practice for strong and flexible individuals. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. Everyone can do yoga. And while it seems like the only benefits of practicing yoga are strength and flexibility, there’s more going on in your body during these poses than meets the eye.
Improved digestion is one of the many benefits of yoga. Therefore, if you’ve been experiencing bloating, constipation, or even stomach cramps, it may be time to dust off that yoga mat and get into one of the above poses. These poses apply pressure onto your digestive organs and massage your intestines to eliminate gas and relieve indigestion symptoms.
If you’re a beginner, the poses may seem a bit awkward at first, but they’re worth it. Besides, you’ll get better the more you do it. So say goodbye to stomach discomfort with this natural remedy.