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Improving Digestive Health With Yoga
Yoga is a disciplined practice to improve health and prepare the body for meditation. The word “Yoga” originates in Sanskrit and means “Union.” Typically, we associate Yoga with the physical practice of Hatha Yoga, but there are mental and spiritual disciplines as well.
When it comes to healing the digestive system, physical Yoga poses can be incredibly transformative. Some of the poses may be uncomfortable at first. With practice, it becomes easier and then eventually a way of life.
The First Steps.
It is helpful to first learn Yoga poses from a qualified instructor in order to avoid injury and reap the full benefits of the practice. Even learning just a few poses, which focus on digestion, and practicing them frequently can make a positive change. Interestingly, the side effects of Yoga practice include improved mood and motivation. This leads you into a new lifestyle as overall health improves.
If you do not have access to Yoga classes or an instructor, you can learn a great deal from videos and books. Start with basic, simple poses. Since the goal is to improve digestive health, there are specific poses for bringing blood and energy to the entire digestive system. They do have formal names, which are difficult for beginners to understand. The English descriptions will be used here in order to keep the practice simple.
Some of the poses include:
• Forward Bend,
• Downward-Facing Dog Pose,
• Upward-Facing Dog Pose,
• Triangle Pose,
• Side-Angle Pose,
• Bridge Pose,
• Cobra Pose,
• High Lunge,
• Marichi’s Pose,
• Wind-Relieving Pose,
These all might sound quite odd at first. Look them up and start learning how to do them. As stated, ideally you would learn this Yoga from an instructor. Many people have successfully learned poses by carefully reading Yoga instruction books and working with videos. Eventually, you get the kinesthetic feel for these practices and you literally feel how they work as your practice progresses. The poses listed are quite a workout on a cardiovascular and strengthening level.
How Yoga Poses Improve Digestive Health.
Typically, we go through our day standing, walking, sitting, and occasionally bending over. Many people lead sedentary lifestyles with only sitting and walking short distances. Notice how all of these positions leave the abdominal area idle? The idea of this practice is to get the abdominal area and core muscles to engage in movement. This increases circulation to the intestines, liver, pancreas, and all the surrounding lymph nodes.
By waking up the digestive organs in this manner, they start to function more efficiently because nutrients and oxygen are flowing to them more efficiently. You will notice improved bowel movements, release of trapped gas, and even relief of heartburn and other digestive discomforts. Practicing Yoga poses consistently will bring even greater results.
As the intestines get moving again, wastes and toxins trapped in the body are constantly eliminated. Couple this with a healthy diet including plenty of organic fruits and vegetables and a cleansing effect is created, healing the digestive system. The fibers from these healthy foods trap the toxins released during practice and they are more easily eliminated from the body.
The Rewards Of Digestive Healing Through Yoga.
One of the first things people notice from Yoga and its healing effects on digestion is a greater sense of well-being. This is much like a “runner’s high.” Actually, it is the same thing. The body releases endorphins and other feel-good neurotransmitters, improving mood, mental clarity, and quality of life. Best of all, you do not need a gym or any special equipment to practice. You can do them almost anywhere at your convenience. Over time, this becomes a new lifestyle and you will enjoy a life with magnificent digestive health.
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