3 Yoga Poses for IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome)

According to previous estimates, about 9-23 percent of the world’s population suffer from Irritable Bowel Syndrome, or IBS. It is a common gastrointestinal condition that affects people of all ages. Because some of the main symptoms include abdominal pain, cramping, excessive gas, bloating, and a change in bowel movements, it reduces the quality of life of those affected. IBS is usually triggered by hormonal imbalance, poor eating habits, and ongoing stress, but it affects everyone in different ways.

For some, IBS can make them feel weak, while others experience only mild or moderate symptoms. The exact cause of IBS is still unknown. As a result, proper diagnosis can be extremely difficult and treatment options show no obvious results. IBS is not just an intestinal/gastrointestinal disorder, it is actually a chronic mental illness in which the gastrointestinal tract becomes compromised because the central nervous system is under stress for a very long time. Because IBS is connected to the brain, yoga can help curb the severe symptoms of IBS by helping to calm the central nervous system.

Recently, Shynee Narang, a certified yoga teacher, took to her social media to share how yoga can help treat irritable bowel syndrome. Read on to learn how yoga can help with irritable bowel syndrome.

Yoga for IBS
This is how yoga can help you with irritable bowel syndrome. Image courtesy: Freepik

Yoga poses for IBS

IBS causes changes in your bowel habits and develops into a vicious cycle.

• Stress and anxiety can disrupt the central nervous system, which releases stress hormones that affect our gut, causing diarrhea, constipation, gas, or gas.
• In addition, unhealthy eating habits can lead to gastrointestinal disorders such as cramping pains, changes in bowel habits and bloating that cause stress and vice versa.
• External factors such as work, relationships, and mental health can also trigger GI symptoms.

Here are a few yoga poses/stretches that can help calm the aggravated system!

1. Upward facing dog

The upward facing dog helps relieve symptoms of depression, stress or anxiety.

How do you do this pose?

1. First, lie flat on the mat and bring your hands under your elbows.
2. Squeeze your elbows and pull your shoulders back.
3. Press on the tops of your feet and arch your chest up.
4. Straighten your arms and lift your thighs off the floor.
5. Activate your legs, tighten your glutes and squeeze your inner thighs. Pull your shoulders back and squeeze your shoulder blades together
6. Lift through the crown of your head to elongate your neck and bring your gaze forward.

2. Bow Pose

The bow pose promotes blood circulation, improves posture, and helps treat digestive and chest disorders.

Yoga for IBS
The bow pose helps manage digestive nutrients by improving bowel digestion. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

How do you do this pose?
1. Come onto the mat on your stomach.
2. Extend your legs behind you and bring your forehead down and your hands by your hips.
3. Bend your knees and reach back with your hand to grab your ankles
4. Squeeze your inner thighs. Push back by lifting your chin to lift yourself up, allowing your arms to straighten, and use the strength of your legs to push back even more to lift your knees off the floor.

Also read: Digestion in Winter: 5 Yoga Poses to Restore Your Gut Health

3. Camel husbandry

The camel pose helps reduce fat on the thighs, expand the abdominal region, and improve digestion and elimination.

Yoga for IBS
Yoga can improve your gut health. Image courtesy Adobe Stock

How do I perform a camel pose?
1. Start by sitting in Vajraasna and stand on your knees by spreading your legs.
2. Inhale and then exhale by pushing your hips forward and slowly bringing your arms to your ankles and arching back.
3. To release the pose, breathe in and relax into child’s pose.

These poses stimulate the digestive organs and improve the digestive system. Apart from that, one can also perform deep breathing, Anulom Vilom, meditation and Yoga Nidra to relieve the symptoms.