Yoga For Thyroid Health
The thyroid gland is located below Adam's apple just under the skin. The thyroid gland is composed of two halves connected with Isthmus. It is not visible but it can be felt. The thyroid is basically enlarged in normal conditions. It is a very important endocrine gland. It secretes two hormones into the blood. Those hormones are T3 and T4. The secretion of T3 and T4 is dependent on TSH (Thyroid-stimulating hormone). TSH is released by a master endocrine gland, the pituitary. Thus levels of T4, T3, and TSH in the blood are responsible for thyroid health. If levels of T4 and T3 are raised with suppressed TSH, then the condition is hyperthyroidism. Hypothyroidism is a condition that develops when the thyroid gland is unable to produce enough T3 and T4.
The poor functioning of the thyroid is characterized by nervousness, irritability, inability to relax, feeling warm, heat intolerance, increased sweating, and palpitation, increased frequency of bowel movements, increased appetite, and weight loss. Symptoms of this problem are different in different patients. The cab includes tiredness, weight gain, and feeling of cold, slowing down physically and mentally, and dry skin, loss of hair, muscle weakness, puffiness, depression, hearing loss, and constipation. Women may develop heavy periods or they may lose them altogether. Hypothyroidism is very common. It affects women more frequently than men and usually at around middle age. Hypothyroidism affects approx 1 in 1000 men and 18 in 1000 women. Subclinical hypothyroidism is much more common and affects approx 28 in 1000 men and 75 in 1000 women. One of the most important facts with respect to thyroid diseases is that in most cases they are diagnosed very late so there is the presentation of various complaints related to various organ systems. Only careful examination can reveal that all these features are related t the abnormal functioning of the thyroid gland. A little yoga practice daily can add to thyroid wellness and can keep a lot of diseases away from our bodies. Yogic asana like sarvangsana, halasana, mataysana, naukasan, ushtrasana, bhujangasna and suryanamaskar are some of them. They focus on stimulating the thyroid and improving overall thyroid health. One important thing which is to be kept in mind is that remaining in the pose for the maximum time is very important. The yoga poses should be done slowly with proper procedure. The body strength and age should be kept in mind while doing yoga.
Following is a brief description of some Yoga procedures with proper steps -
1. Sarvangasana (Shoulder stand)
Sarvangasana is one of the most important asanas that is suggested to treat thyroid ailments. It is an inversion process and promotes blood flow to the thyroid gland.
Steps Of Sarvangasana
- Lie on the back and lie flat with arms at the side of the body and palms touching the ground.
- Lift the legs to ninety degrees with the help of the palm and arm with the help of arms and palm.
- A person has to inhale while doing this. While bringing legs over the head person has to exhale slowly.
- The use of hands is very important to fulfill the demand of Sarvangasana and balance the body. While doing this step the spine and hips should be in one line.
- The chin should be tucked properly into the chest. Now slowly roll the spine down and exhale while releasing the pose. It is important to be careful about the neck and back while doing this pose.
The next pose we will discuss here is Halasana which is the plow pose. Plow pose is best for thyroid health. It helps to boost the overall health of the spine also.
Steps Of Halasan
- Lie on the back and place your arms alongside the body.
- The palms of the person should face down.
- Inhale properly while lifting the legs to ninety degrees and exhale while bringing the legs towards the floor over the head.
- The last step for the accomplishment of this asan is to touch the floor with the toes.
- A person should remain in this pose as he/she becomes comfortable.
- On releasing the pose, inhale slowly and left the legs back to the floor over the head, and exhale slowly.
The next yoga pose is the Matsayasna fish pose. The fish pose helps to improve thyroid gland functioning. Also, it is beneficial to manage the lifestyle disorders like stress, anxiety, and diabetes.
Steps of Matsyasana
- Extend the legs in front and sit on the buttocks.
- Place the palms down and hands facing towards the toes.
- Draw elbows in such a way that the chest opens up, and lean back on to forearm and elbows.
- Widen up the chest as much as possible and stay lifted.
- Realize this yoga pose by releasing the hands and lying on the back.
- Take proper deep breaths and continue the cycle.
4. Viprit Karni
The next pose we will discuss is Viprit Karni or legs up the wall pose. It is one of the best choices for patients suffering from thyroid dysfunction.
Steps of Viprit Karni
- The first step is to place feet on the floor.
- Exhale properly and lie on the back.
- The next step is to press the wall with the legs and place the sole feet upwards.
- Stay in a comfortable position and set the buttocks near the wall.
- Hands can be used for body support.
- Make an angle of 90 degrees with the back and head resting on the floor.
- Make sure while posing you must close your eyes and breathe properly.
- The time duration of this pose must be 5 -10 mins.
5. Cat-Cow Pose
This yoga pose is beneficial for thyroid patients. This pose helps to stimulate the thyroid gland. Exposing the neck and following a proper pose help to improve thyroid function.
Steps of Cat-Cow Pose
- Place the wrist directly under the shoulder and place the knee under the hips.
- The weight of the body should be balanced on both the legs and arms.
- Inhale and exhale properly.
- The next step is to look up towards the ceiling of the room or towards the sky and stretch the neck.
- After that, draw the navel into the spine and exhale properly.
- Continue this movement for a few seconds.
6. Bhujangasan (Cobra pose)
Bhujanagasna (Cobra pose) is helpful to promote and stimulate the thyroid gland. It is very easy to do and can be performed by a person of any age group.
Steps of Bhujangasan
- Lie flat on the stomach with hands placed under the shoulder.
- Palms should be on the floor and must be pressing the ground.
- With the help of a slight bend, elbows inhale slowly and lift chest, head, and shoulders.
- After then keep the body to the normal status step by step gradually.
Hyperthyroidism is a very common problem these days. It is very prevalent among societies, especially among females. It is the demand of time to avoid synthetic medicines. The herbal remedies with proper yoga are able to manage the problems like hypothyroidism. Yoga should be done under the proper guidance of a yoga expert or an ayurvedic doctor. There are ample yoga centers to get the idea of the exact poses of yoga to get appropriate benefits. Yoga is our ancient science; we must stick to our roots for a better future.