Katie Regan, MBA, RDN
The human body is far more interconnected than most people realize. Most people recognize that exercise can help boost energy levels, improve your mood, and make you feel overall healthier, but very few people appreciate the benefits that come from hormonal releases.
Exercise is like nutrition, you need balance. Your body benefits from a healthy combination of anaerobic and aerobic exercises. Just like following a low FODMAP diet, low impact exercise can be beneficial for managing IBS. Yoga offers a relatively low impact exercise that engages your entire body. Due to the easy-going, gentle nature of yoga, yoga can be a great option for IBS patients. In this article, we’ll share a shortlist of yoga poses that’ll help you handle your IBS.
Step your feet to hip-width distance. Plant your hands shoulder-width apart. Bring your hips in line with your shoulders. Engage your core muscles. Engage your quadriceps muscles.
Start from a plank position. Step your feet hips-width distance apart at the back of your mat. At the front of your mat, plant your hands shoulder-width distance. Spread your fingers wide. Breath in, send your hips back and up. Sink your heels towards the back of your mat.
Bring the tops of your feet to the mat. Send your chest forward. Press into your palms. Lift your shins, thighs, and hips off of the mat. Keep your gaze forward.
Starting on the right. Root down into your grounded hand. Shift both heels to one side of your mat and stack your feet. Stack your hips and shoulders in one line. Extend through your bottom arm and gaze up. Hold here for 30 seconds. Release down into plank. Breathe in. Repeat on left.
Half-Seated Spinal Twist
Start in a seated position. Knees bent and feet firmly planted on the ground. Cross your left leg under your right, with your left foot pulled towards your right buttock, so the left outer thigh rests on the ground and knee points forward. Place your right leg over your left with your right foot flat on the ground in front of your left knee. Be sure that you are balanced well with your back fully extended. Slowly spin your torso towards the right. Wrap your left arm around your right knee and slowly exhale, continue to twist just a bit more, and stop before it becomes uncomfortable. Hold this pose for 6 - 10 breaths and repeat now on the left.
Reclining Abdominal Twist
Starting on your back, bend and squeeze your right leg to your right armpit as you slowly breathe outward. Hold the pose for a few breaths. Bend your right leg at the knee and bring it across your body to the left pointing your knee straight out to the left. Extend your right arm back along the shoulder line and place your palm flat on the ground. Keep your shoulder grounded. Hold this pose for 6 - 10 breaths and go back to the flat-lying position. Repeat the reverse for the other side.
Know that yoga is not only a great option because of the stretching of your muscles, but also because of the ability to de-stress. Stress management is another great form of IBS care.
For more IBS-related resources like this, please visit https://modifyhealth.com/blogs/blog