One of the greatest pleasures that we as humans have is the ability to eat. Now, while it could be argued that every living creature on this planet eats in some form or another, we as people have taken it to a whole other level.
Sure, food is required by all of us to live and survive; it is simple really, our body needs nutrients and fuel. But unlike other creatures, we have turned the idea and act of eating into a pleasurable art form.
Eating for humans is much more than just attaining sustenance, it is a sensorial experience, and arguably for most people, an enjoyable one. However, eating is only one-half of the equation, because after we eat, the food has to go somewhere. But what if it doesn’t?
Constipation is a condition in which there is a difficulty in emptying the bowels, usually associated with hardened waste. While not a new condition by any means, it is one that has been plaguing more and more people (and younger too) every year.
While certain diets, natural remedies and over the counter medications can all be practiced or taken to alleviate the discomfort of constipation, there seems to be a new source of relief for those who are ‘backed up’ – yoga.
According to yoga expert Shrabani Das, there are many yoga poses or ‘asanas,’ that promote healthy digestion and expulsion of waste. So before you go reaching for a laxative next time you are experiencing a bout of constipation, try one of these yoga poses:
- Sit down on the ground with your legs extended in front of you; toes pointed toward the ceiling.
- Bend your left leg, under your right one, placing your foot next to your right buttock.
- Place the right foot firm on the ground, near the left knee.
- Extend both your arms, and twist your upper body to the right. Place the right arm on the ground behind the back, and your lefthand on the right ankle in front of your body.
- Sustain the pose for at least 30 seconds. Gradually, increase the time to 1 minute.
- Release and repeat on the other side.
- Recline on your back and hug your legs into your chest.
- Pull the head up and try to put your nose in between the knees.
- You may rock genty if you wish too. Release after 10 to 15 seconds
- Alternatively, you can extend one leg out.
- Start by kneeling on your knees, with your knees touching.
- Sit down so your bottom is touching your feet and your hands are on your knees.
- Place your hands on the floor in front of you and slowly start to move them forward, lowering your body down until your stomach is on your knees and your arms are stretched out in front of you. Your hands stay touching the floor or you can take them back to hold your feet.
- Now relax, taking slow deep breaths in and out of your nose.
- Hold for about 30 seconds and let the weight of your body go so that you are relaxed in this pose, and your knees push into the abdomen to provide relief.
- Then slowly work your way back up.