By Daphne Clarance: Yoga has been associated with health benefits for the body, many of which have been backed by research.

Known to bolster the mind and body connection, yoga provides a holistic approach to healthcare, especially for people who cannot afford to train rigorously.

On International Yoga Day, which is celebrated every year on June 21, Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosts a special event to demonstrate the effects of yoga on our daily life.

One of them involves the positive effects on gastrointestinal problems. People with digestive disorders can practise certain asanas to help them improve their digestion.

Gastrointestinal issues (GI) not just lead to non-communicable diseases like hypertension and diabetes, but also cause mental health issues like depression, anxiety, stress and impaired central nervous system functioning.

Dr Rajeev Rajesh, Chief Yoga Officer at Jindal Naturecure Institute spoke about how yoga can improve your digestion and the best asanas to boost metabolism.

“Indigestion, bloating, and constipation are common digestive problems that can be aggravated by stress. Deep breathing exercises, meditation, and relaxation are all parts of yoga which help lower stress. Your body can better digest and absorb nutrients from the food you eat when you’re calm,” said Dr Rajeev Rajesh.

Some yoga postures encourage blood flow to the abdomen, which can improve digestion.

Enhancing blood circulation ensures that the digestive organs receive an adequate amount of nutrients and oxygen, which optimises their performance.

Dr Rajesh added that numerous yoga asanas like twisting, bending, and stretching stimulate the digestive organs.

“These motions massage the organs, improving their functionality and aiding in the removal of toxins,” the expert said.

Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)

This posture stimulates the digestive system, stretches the abdominal muscles, and enhances metabolism and digestion.

Pavanamuktasana (Wind-Relieving Pose)

This posture promotes digestion and eases gas and bloating by massaging the abdominal organs.

Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)

This posture improves metabolism, stimulates the digestive system, and strengthens the abdominal muscles.

Ardha Matsyendrasana (Half Spinal Twist)

This twisting position improves digestion by massaging the digestive organs and increasing blood flow.

Paschimottanasana (Seated Forward Bend)

This posture improves digestion, stimulates the abdominal organs, and eases constipation.

Surya Namaskar (Sun Salutation)

This series of yoga poses stimulates the metabolism, supports overall wellness, and helps the digestive system.