Debbie J., MS, RD contributed this article –
In the Living Healthy blog, we’re often sharing nutrition advice to help you achieve better physical performance. In this article, we’re promoting certain exercise to improve your nutrition status. What a twist! Yes, pun intended.
Many digestive ills are relieved by yoga including gas, bloating and constipation. The practice of ayurvedic medicine promotes yoga for digestion. In fact, yoga is used to treat abdominal pain for several digestive disorders. Improving digestive health means better nutrition since nutrient absorption and waste elimination are enhanced.
How does yoga achieve this? Primarily by utilizing the poses that stimulate nerves, enhance the flow of blood and digestive juices, promote the travel of food in the GI tract and proper elimination. Alternate tension in your abdominal muscles with deep breathing (Pranayama), abdominal stretches and massaging twists, and you’ve got a perfect combination of yoga to help relieve your belly woes.
Primary yoga poses that are believed to aid digestion:
- Cat-Cow (marjaryasana-bitilasana)
- Downward Facing Dog (adho mukha svanasana)
- Triangle (trikonasana) and Revolved triangle (pavrtta trikonasana)
- Extended puppy (uttana shishosana)
- Bridge (setu bandha saravangasana)
- Gas release (ardha pawamuktasana)
- Supine twist (supta matsyendrasana)
- Knees to chest (apanasana) followed by Corpse (savasana)
The underlying tenet of Ayrurveda is that health begins in the digestive system.
LA Fitness yoga classes flow through a series of dynamic movements that help to increase your flexibility, restore balance, and strengthen core muscles of the lower back and abdominals. The class is great for improving focus and self-awareness.
Find an LA Fitness yoga class near you.
Should you wish to modify your diet to compliment your yoga, consider that most traditional practitioners eat a diet comprised mainly of vegetable proteins, rich in cereals, vitamin- and mineral-rich fruits, and which is low in salt content. Promoting a healthy balance of bacteria is indispensable to gut function. A high fiber diet combined with probiotic sources such as active culture yogurt, kefir and kimchi helps achieve this balance.
This information is not meant to replace medical advice. See your healthcare practitioner for any digestive concerns as there may be a more serious underlying condition.