Who doesn’t experience the following digestive complaints from time to time?

Bloating, constipation, excessive wind, burping and heartburn.

So many people walk through the clinic doors with a load of digestive issues. The most common one being constipation and bloating. Constipation and bloating can be caused by many different factors. The common culprits being poor diet, stress, food intolerance, pathogens (bacteria, parasites, fungi) and poor balance of gut flora.



If you do not poop every day, you are recycling your own toxic garbage. When your poop leaves your body it takes with it inflammatory toxins. If you are constipated and are not completely emptying your bowels daily, chances are the toxins are hanging out in your colon causing all sorts of problems or are being re-absorbed by the body.

A buildup of toxins in the body can cause many health issues from hormonal imbalances, impaired brain function (foggy mind, poor concentration, Parkinson’s), infertility and digestive issues such as leaky gut. On a superficial level you may experience pimples/acne and bad breath.

Making sure that you get adequate fibre through food, addressing any pathogens present and managing your stress can help your bowels move and poop as they should. Great sources of fibrous foods to get stuck into are brussel sprouts, avocado, chia seeds, broccoli, berries and kiwi fruit.



A regular yoga practice stimulates the flow of energy throughout your body enhancing each organs function, the digestive organs included. Yoga can also help to reduce stress and when the student is committed, it can help you become more present, less reactive and less attached to the stories/drama that concern you.

Many asanas reduce digestive sluggishness, stimulate bowel movement and nourish our digestive organs. I have chosen five of my all-time favourites. Most of these work on nourishing the stomach, spleen and intestines. Our major organs of digestion. Some also support kidney, liver and gallbladder health which encourage proper detoxification and breakdown of foods.

If any pain is present I would avoid doing any of these asanas and take yourself off to a class where a teacher can help you with modifications and proper alignment.

Most poses that involve a twist help to rinse out and rejuvenate the digestive organs. Twisted roots give the stomach a little squeeze and massages the internal organs. This pose also releases tension in the spine, alleviating any blockages and allowing more energy to flow through the digestive system.Twisting through the rib cage stimulates and nourishes our other organs of digestion such as the gall bladder, liver, spleen and pancreas.



Draw the right knee to the chest and wrap over the left leg. Twist the legs (your roots) to the left side. Look over your right shoulder with arms outstretched. Stay in this pose for 5 minutes or more then swap legs and repeat on the other side.

Saddle is a very challenging pose but one that nicely nourishes the stomach, spleen and kidney. She is truly a favourite of mine.



Sit on your feet with knees slightly apart. Lean back on hands or elbows. A bolster can be used crossways under your shoulders or lengthwise under your spine. If more range is available lie back with arms lying alongside the body or stretched over the head. Stay in this baby for up to 5 minutes.

A juicy pose that compresses the stomach, stimulates the kidneys and helps to strengthen the digestive organs..



Simply sit with both legs straight out in front of you. You can sit on a cushion or blanket and bend your knees if you have tight lower back muscles or hamstrings. Fold forward with a rounded back over the legs. You can rest your elbows on your thighs or the floor. Or hold the toes loosely. If the body permits you may even want to slightly part the legs and rest your chest in between. Stay in this pose anywhere from 5-10 minutes.

Aside from feeling delicious this pose stretches and stimulates the stomach nicely, especially when in full seal.



Lie on the belly and place your arms on the floor just ahead of your shoulders, like a sphinx. Or press up onto your hands for the full version of this pose, seal. Spread your legs apart or keep them close together, depending on the health of your lower back. You can prop yourself up with a bolster under the pelvis or armpits as an alternative. Hold for around 5 minutes.

A dynamic pose that increases peristaltic activity in your digestive tract. This helps move food and waste through your digestive and elimination system. As an added bonus the kidney and liver are nourished.



From a warrior two position. Step the right foot into a lunge. Place right palm on floor or block, by the side of right foot. Stretch the left arm over the left ear. Lengthen from the outer edge of the back foot to tip of front fingers. Open up through the chest and heart.

Sarah Martino