6 Best Yoga Exercises to Improve Gut Health

Whether you suffer from bloating or other gastrointestinal issues, yoga can be an effective way to relieve discomfort and improve your gut health.

Sure, you can fuel your digestive system with healthy foods and drinks, but yoga can be another helpful way to keep gut health on track. Yoga exercises can help improve digestion by increasing blood circulation, encouraging physical activity, reducing stress, and promoting better functioning of the GI (gastrointestinal tract).

Doing a few poses or asanas for a few minutes can help stimulate the digestive system and bring immediate relief.

Yoga exercises to improve gut health

Here are six of the best yoga asanas that can aid digestion and help relieve gas, constipation, and bloating. These poses can help stimulate the bowel and give you immediate relief from any unpleasant stomach issues. Let’s start:

1) Half Wind Relief Pose (Ardha Pawanmuktasana)

To do this pose:

  • Lying flat on your back, bring your left knee toward your chest and interlace your fingers under your kneecap.
  • Tuck your chin into your chest with your head on the floor and slowly pull your knee towards your chest using your arms.
  • Press your back and shoulders against the floor while keeping your elbows at your sides.
  • Rest your legs, hips, and feet in a relaxed position. Hold the pose for a few minutes and breathe deeply.
  • To come out, release your legs and arms to the floor and repeat on the other side.
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2) Seated Lateral Bend (Parsva Sukhasana)

To do this yoga exercise:

  • Sit up straight on the floor and keep your legs in a cross-legged position. Place your hands on the floor by your side.
  • Raise your right arm straight up to the ceiling and bend over to your left side. Keep your left forearm on the floor and breathe deeply in this position.
  • Switch sides and repeat the pose.
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3) Knees to Chest (Apansana)

To do this pose:

  • Lie on your back in a supine position and keep your legs together and straight.
  • Bend your knees and use your arms to pull your knees towards your chest.
  • Hold this position for a few minutes and bring your legs back to the starting position. Repeat several times.
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4) Standing forward bend (Uttanasana)

To do this pose:

  • Begin in Tadasana or Mountain Pose, with your heels slightly apart and your big toes touching. Keep your arms out to the side, palms facing forward and tailbone below.
  • Sweep your arms out to your sides and then overhead. Lean forward from your hips and lower your upper body onto your legs while lengthening your spine.
  • Bring your right hand to your left elbow and your left hand to your right elbow. Hold this position for as long as you can.
  • Roll your spine out of the pose.
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5) Camel Pose (Ustrasana)

To do this pose:

  • Get on your knees and keep your knees apart. Make sure your thighs are perpendicular to the floor and your feet are facing the ceiling.
  • Draw your hands to the sides and push your chest up and forward. Simultaneously push your hips forward and reach your hands back to grip your heels.
  • Move your hips forward so they pass over your knees and let your head drop.
  • Hold the pose for a few minutes and return to the starting position.
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6) Cat-Cow Pose (Marjaryasana-Bitilasana)

To do this yoga exercise:

  • Keeping your body in a tabletop position, move your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips.
  • Shift your stomach toward the floor and lift your hips and chest toward the ceiling in cow pose.
  • For cat pose, widen your shoulders and seat bones, and round your upper back toward the ceiling.
  • Keeping your gaze on your navel, press your feet and hands to the floor to adopt the pose of the cat.
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Studies suggest that yoga exercises can be an effective complementary treatment for intestinal problems, including irritable bowel syndrome.

The aforementioned poses can help relieve symptoms, such as bloating, constipation, and gas, and offer great relief. Although yoga is generally considered safe, it is always advisable to consult a doctor before beginning your practice.

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