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Yoga And Your Digestive System

Sometimes overeating can leave us feeling heavy and bloated, just lying on the couch. We have our digestive systems for thank for that. Sometimes trying to digest a big meal brings problems like gas, acid reflux and even constipation. But put those antacids away. New studies suggest that yoga can be a healthier and more effective way to deal with indigestion and other uncomfortable digestive problems.

Yoga offers a wide variety of health benefits, from improved flexibility, stronger muscles and improved circulation to a healthier heart. But it doesn’t stop there. Certain yoga poses have been shown to help stimulate digestion and help relieve troublesome digestive health issues like constipation.

How It Works

Digestive health problems like irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, heartburn can be worsened by stress. Practicing yoga not only helps de-stress the body, but also eases digestion. Yoga poses help waste products and food be transported more smoothly through the body. In addition, the way your body moves during specific yoga poses can accelerate this process, and certain twisting poses help keep things moving more efficiently.

3 Yoga Poses To Help With Digestion

  1. Apanasana (To help with relief from gas and bloating)
    Lie flat on your back, relax and breath in while placing your hands on your knees. Let your breath out, bringing your knees into your chest. Stay in this position for 5-10 breaths before releasing your knees.

  2. Paschimottanasana (To help with relaxation and relieve stress that may be affecting your digestion)
    While sitting on the floor with your legs out in front, bend forward at the hip while making sure to keep your back straight. Stretch your hands out as far as possible and hold this position for 5-10 breaths.

  3. Seated Heart Opener (When you’ve overeaten, this pose can help stretch out your belly and aid with stomach cramps)
    Sit on top of your heels, leaning back and place your palms behind you with your fingertips pointing away from you. Lift your chest while arching your back and lower your head behind you. This should stretch everything from your chest to your back. Hold this pose for 5-10 breaths.

Yoga can be an effective and natural way to aid in digestion. By practicing these simple yoga poses, you can feel more relief in a matter of minutes

Dr. James C. Strobel MD

Dr. Strobel joined our practice in July of 1997. He received his undergraduate degree from Indiana University in Bloomington, and his medical degree from Indiana University in Indianapolis. Following this, Dr. Strobel completed his residency in Internal Medicine, and after three years of additional training, completed his fellowship in Gastroenterology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. Dr. Strobel is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. He is married and the proud father of three children. In his free time, he enjoys basketball, baseball, reading, and spending time with his family.

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