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4 Yoga Poses to Help Relieve Constipation Naturally

by DailyHealthPost Editorial

relieve constipation naturally

Yoga For Constipation

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Do you have tummy troubles?

Most of people shy away from talking about the poop factor in their life, but when you are backed up it’s hard to think about anything else.

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Constipation can be painful, uncomfortable, and downright embarrassing.

And when you are constipated do you really want to take a laxative. A laxative, especially in public, has a way more embarrassing consequence than constipation (diarrhea).

Instead of risking running to the bathroom every 5 minutes from taking a laxative try out some of these basic poses. Using yoga for constipation is a safe way to help get things moving right along.

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Yoga For Constipation and How to Relieve Constipation

yoga for constipation

1. Wind Relieving Pose

The first yoga pose to relieve constipation gets its name for good reason. The wind relieving pose often comes with gas release because you are compressing your ascending and descending colon. You should always do wind relieving pose on the right side of your body because it is pressing on your ascending colon [1] which comes first in the digestive track.

How to do it:

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To do wind relieving pose you start by laying flat on your back with a neutral spine. Now bring your right leg up towards your body and bend the knee. With your arms gently pull the right leg into the right side of your body. According to Dr. Melissa West [1] this pose should be held between 10 and 30 breathes and once you have completed the right side continue by doing the left side.

Constipation Relief - Yoga Help

2. Half Plow

Half plow is another great pose for helping with constipation. This pose works because you are in an inverted position. According to many yoga experts including Carrie Demers, MD, [3] inverted poses help with elimination. The half plow is a good option for getting the body in an inverted position that can be held easily for a good amount of time. It is also much easier for beginners to yoga than its sister pose full plow.

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How to do it:

To perform half plow you will need a chair or a wall but for the sake of this example, we will use a wall. Start by getting a few dense blankets and fold them into a rectangle the length of your back. It’s recommended that you use yoga blankets for this. Place the blankets a foot away from the wall. Lie on your back with the blankets beneath you, and let your head rest off the blankets. Now as gently as possible kick your legs up over your head and use your hands support your torso. Your hands should be on your high waist not your hips. Place your feet on the wall with your hips in a 90-degree angle. It is very important that in this pose you do not rotate the head and that the shoulders are pulled back and down to keep the chest open.

Yoga Plow with Half-Lotus Variation

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3. Triangle Pose

Triangle pose gently encourages the body to come into deep side bends. According 500-hour yoga certified instructor Timothy Burgin [4] deep side bends help get the intestinal juices flowing because side bends activate the gallbladder and liver, the body’s source of bile production. Bile is important with constipation because one of the greatest causes for constipation is poor diet. Bile is what helps the body digest fat, a huge part of poor diet choices like french fries.

How to do it:

Step 1

To perform triangle pose, stand nice and tall with a good posture and jump or step your feet so that if your arms are spread in a T, the feet land underneath the wrists. Once your feet are under your wrists, make sure your feet are firmly planted on the ground. Now starting with the right side, rotate the right toes out away from the body (if the arms are still in T form your toes point the same direction as the fingers).

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Step 2

Inhale and bring your arms up into a T and Exhale tipping over like a teapot and placing your hand on your shin. The opposite arm should be reaching towards the sky. Make sure your gaze is also upward if it is comfortable for the neck. After you have taken a few deep breaths in this position you can extend your arm all the way to the floor, but only do this if you can keep the chest open and your legs are not in any pain from being over stretched. Once you have held the pose for a reasonable amount of time come back to standing and do the other side.

Yoga Asanas - Triangle Pose Trikonasana Asana

4. Corpse Pose

Corpse pose may be the most beneficial of all the poses mentioned in this article because one of the leading causes of constipation is stress. When you do the corpse pose, it should be at the end of every yoga session and should be at least 10% of the time that you spend doing yoga. The corpse pose is a pose to relax and meditate. According to Dr. Rita Louise [2] to help relieve your constipation you need to relax or meditate.

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How to do it:

Step 1

Find a place to lie down flat on your back. Be sure the area you are in is not too warm and not too cold and gently bring yourself down to the floor and safely bring your body down to lie flat on your back. Your spine should be in a completely neutral position. You can cover yourself with a blanket or place a bolster or pillow under the knees or head. Make sure you are comfortable. You will also want to set a timer so you are not wondering how long you have been in corpse pose mostly because the goal is to not think. Set the time for at least 10 percent of your yoga practice, or longer.

Step 2

When you are comfortable gently close your eyes and take nice deep breaths and if you are not sure if your breaths are deep enough or if you are breathing properly place your hand on your low belly and as you breathe in feel your belly rise and as you breathe out feel your belly fall. Keep your breath deep and even. As you breathe start at the feet and relax every section of the body. Once you reach your head be sure to relax your brow line, release the jaw, let your tongue come away from the roof of your mouth and maybe even let the lips peel open just slightly. Now free your mind and just breathe.

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Step 3

When the timer goes off, coming out of corpse correctly is very important. Gently roll to your right side and lie in a fetal position and take a few deep breaths and once you are ready come in to a seated position like criss-cross apple sauce (your eyes should still be closed). Once your body seems to become more aware gently open the eyes and Namaste.

Corpse Pose - Yoga With Adriene

Give it a try

Yoga is fantastic for so many reasons and relieving/avoiding constipation is a huge part of that, furthermore becoming more relaxed with yoga will help you to have less flare ups of constipation.

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Remember that both before and after doing yoga to drink plenty of water [5], this will help to pass your bowel movement, but the traditional practice of yoga doesn’t include drinking water during.

If you are having regular problems with constipation yoga can be a much better option for relief than taking laxatives, because regular usage can lead to laxative dependency due to weakening the bowels [6].

Most of all, if you can avoid medications like laxatives and let the body get rid of waste in a natural way you’re better off. But as always with any chronic problem you should talk to your doctor.

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So, when your “go” just isn’t going these yoga poses are just what you need.

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