Have you been facing stomach problems? Most people tend to overlook digestive problems as a sign of something that happened after they ate something bad. But sometimes it is a sign of a more serious problem called irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). While most of us have heard of IBS before, not many know what exactly it means. For the uninitiated, irritable bowel syndrome is a common disorder that affects your intestines and stomach. It can make you extremely uncomfortable, and lead to symptoms like abdominal pain, gas, diarrhoea, constipation, or cramping. One of the best ways to tackle this problem is yoga. Here’s how yoga works for irritable bowel syndrome.
How does yoga help with irritable bowel syndrome?
Yoga is an ancient practice that has been part of Indian culture for thousands of years. This ancient practice offers physical and mental health benefits for people of all ages. In fact, it is believed that yoga can help you recover from serious illnesses as well. Yoga can also help people deal with irritable bowel syndrome.
Certified yoga instructor Shynee Narang shared with Healthshots that irritable bowel syndrome is not just a digestive issue but also a psychological condition that reflects an emotional imbalance. The gastrointestinal tract gets compromised when the central nervous system is under stress for a long time. And the best solution to relax the nervous system is yoga.
Yoga asanas for irritable bowel syndrome
Narang suggests the following yogic practices can help you soothe the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome:
1. Anulom vilom
Anulom Vilom is a type of Pranayam, which is also known as controlled breathing, that offers a lot of physical and psychological benefits. This yoga asana involves alternative nostril breathing. You basically close one nostril and inhale, then close the other nostril and exhale. Then, you reverse and repeat the process.
2. Deep breathing
Just like the name suggests, deep breathing is about taking long, slow deep breaths to help relax the nervous system, muscles, and mind. It will help you feel relaxed and in control. Studies have suggested that deep breathing can help relieve the symptoms of IBS by reducing stress and anxiety.
Meditation is about being aware of your inner self and the outer world. Studies have shown that meditation alters how our brains absorb thoughts, emotions, and sensations. It is also believed that practising meditation regularly can help reduce IBS symptoms and relieve stomachache.
Also Read: Here’s your beginner’s guide to meditation
4. Yoga Nidra
Yoga Nidra is one of the best solutions to deal with digestive issues. It is a combination of two powerful techniques: yoga and meditation. Yoga Nidra is performed while lying still on the ground. It has a profoundly calming effect that calms a stressed-out nervous system, tense muscles, and a busy mind. It’s a chance to relax more deeply than you would while sleeping.
Narang advises, “you must include yoga poses in your practice which either expand or stretch the stomach or twist the stomach.” You can include yoga poses such as Bhujangasana, Dhanurasana, Vajrayana, and Pawanmuktasana.
As per the yoga instructor, all these yoga poses stimulate digestive organs. It helps in the better functioning of the digestive system. While these yoga asanas can work to help you get relief from irritable bowel syndrome, it is best to talk to your doctor to deal with it.