Having a healthy liver is paramount to living a healthy life. Given the important job your liver has — breaking down and filtering toxins, storing vitamins and other nutrients, and producing bile to help with digestion — it’s essential to take steps to ensure it’s functioning properly. This is where yoga comes in. Yoga helps reduce stress, promotes healthy digestion, and aids in detoxification.
The Mountain Pose strengthens the spine and abdominal muscles, which helps improve digestion and your liver’s overall functioning. To do this pose: Stand up tall with your feet together and your weight evenly balanced between them. Place your hands over your head with your palms touching and your fingers extended. Lift your chest, keep your shoulders relaxed, and reach up, feeling the stretch in your body.
uttanasana (Standing Forward Bend)
The Standing Forward Bend helps relax the nervous system, reduce stress, and stimulate the liver and kidneys. Stand straight with your feet together and your hands at your sides. Inhale, and then exhale, gently bending forward from your hips. Place your hands on the floor (or the back of a chair if you’re a beginner) while allowing your body to hang. While in this pose, your head, shoulders, and chest should be relaxed, and your abdominal muscles pulled in. While exhaling, slowly and gently fold your body forward. Hold the pose for 30 to 60 seconds.
Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)
The Bow Pose helps improve digestion and liver functioning, as well as detoxify your body. To do this pose: Lie on your belly on the floor. Bend your knees, keeping your feet hip-width apart, and bring your hands back to grasp your ankles. Inhale, and then as you exhale, lift your chest and legs off the floor. Hold the pose for 30 seconds, breathing deeply. To come out of the pose, exhale as you gently lower your chest and legs to the floor.
Bhujangasana (Cobra Pose)
The Cobra Pose helps improve digestion and stimulates the liver and abdominal organs. To do this pose: Lie flat on the floor and place your palms on the floor underneath your shoulders. Inhale and draw your elbows toward your waist, pushing your chest off the floor. Keep your feet close together and press your pubic bone to the floor. As you inhale, press your hands down and lift your chest up. Hold the pose for 10 to 30 seconds.
Setu bandhasana (Bridge Pose)
The Bridge Pose can help reduce stress and keep your liver functioning properly. To do this pose: Lie on your back with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor, and arms at your sides. Exhale and lift your body up so your weight is balanced between your feet and your shoulders. Clasp your hands together and press your arms into the floor. Hold the pose for 30 to 60 seconds, breathing deeply.
Although certain yoga practices that focus on the liver are not commonly known, they are among the most effective methods of detoxification and liver cleaning. Consider incorporating these yoga poses into your regular routine to maintain your healthy lifestyle.