A Yoga Flow for Better Digestion
When you have poor or upset digestion, yoga is probably the last thing from your mind. Yet, gentle movement can help increase blood flow to your digestive tract and actually get things moving along a bit more.
So if you’re bloated or feeling a little too full, we’ve got some yoga poses to help your digestive health and make you feel a bit better!
Yoga for Digestion
Many individuals claim yoga has substantially improved their digestion, including bloating, gas, constipation, and more. In a way, yoga does this by decreasing stress, which can cause havoc on the digestive tract, and promoting the proper movement of food through your intestines.
But what poses should you be doing exactly? We’ve got a few ideas for you to flow to a better mental state and to flow into better digestion!
1. Seated Side Bend
This pose can help create space on both sides of the body, allowing your food to move through your digestive tract with ease.
Sit up tall in a comfortable position and rest your right hand on the ground beside you. Inhale and gently raise your left arm overhead, leaning to your right side. Exhale and release.
Repeat on the opposite side, then alternate between the two for 5-10 breaths.
2. Cat-Cow Pose
When it comes to yoga for digestion, there is a lot of focus on the torso and spine. This is because, with stress, strain, and age, the body often loses flexibility and mobility here, as well as space.
And digestion yoga is all about creating a bit more space!
Cat cow is also a very beneficial pose in so many other ways. It doesn’t require too much work so that it can be very relaxing. It also opens up the chest and back in many ways, releasing varying degrees of tension.
Begin on all-fours. Your hands should be flat on the ground right under your shoulders, and your knees should be right under your hips, with your back neutral.
Inhale, and bring your gaze up to the sky, arching your lower back downward. Pause, then exhale, and bring your head in between your arms while arching your back upward. Continue to do this for 5-10 breaths.
Feels good, right?
Make sure to check out: Your Ultimate Guide to Different Yoga Types
3. Bridge Pose
After eating, yoga might not seem all that appealing.
After all, you probably don’t want to be squishing your insides after a big meal. But some poses, like the bridge pose, can prove very beneficial for helping to alleviate poor digestion since, again, it creates a ton of space.
So, how do you do this one?
Start by lying face-up on your back with your knees bent and your feet flat. Inhale and exhale a few times. Then, on your next inhale, slowly bring your buttocks and hips up and off the ground, squeezing your glutes. Pause when your hips and thighs become parallel to one another.
Inhale and exhale at the top, then slowly release and drop back down. Repeat for about 5 breaths or more.
4. Cobra Pose
Most yoga poses increase energy, which is wonderful for your digestive health. The cobra pose offers not only a great stretch for your shoulders and chest but also opens up your abdominals, allowing for smooth and easy digestion.
Begin laying face-down on your yoga mat or a comfortable surface. Place your hands beside your shoulders. Slowly push up through your hands, opening your chest and bringing your gaze to the front. Stay here for 5-10 breaths, or longer if comfortable.
For every pose, it’s really up to you how long you want to stay in it. The rule of thumb is often to listen to your body. If it doesn’t feel right, it’s time to move out of it or ease off.
5. Bow Pose
The bow pose is a great way to stimulate your digestive organs, getting everything moving and digesting!
Start by lying on your stomach. Bend your knees and extend your arms backward and grab your ankles. This will open your chest up, and your gaze can actually come forward here.
If this is comfortable, you can stay here. If you want a little more in terms of stimulation, gently begin rocking back and forth and side to side, kind of like a boat. Do this for 5-10 inhalations and exhalations, then release.
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End of your yoga for digestion flow with savasana. Not sure how to do it? It’s super simple! Lay back on your mat, with your arms comfortably spread out to the side and your feet spread out to either corner of your mat.
Relax here for a minute or more, and let your body do its thing! Try to really focus on your breath and tune into your body. If you feel tense, go through each body part and progressively relax each muscle group.
In reality, you can stay here as long as you like! If you’re in bed, you might even fall asleep, and that’s okay. This is exactly what this pose is all about.
Use These Yoga Poses to Help With Digestive Health
When all else fails, grab for that Pepto or Tums! Sometimes, it’s okay to need a little help with easing any digestive issues. Surprisingly, these issues frequently stem from how processed our food is in today’s modern society.
And often, it can be hard to pinpoint exactly what foods really aggravate your digestive tract.
Taking improving your digestive health a step further, switching to a primarily whole foods diet can help in leaps and bounds when it comes to good digestion. When all else fails, try some of these yoga poses to feel better!
Related article: The Top 5 Digestive Superfoods