Yoga poses to ward off diabetes

A recent study published in the journal, Diabetes Care, captured the attention of many researchers across the globe - particularly those involved in the study and control of diabetes.

The study conducted at the Kasturba Medical College hospital in Mangalore indicated that yoga can help to steady the blood sugar level in diabetics. The chronic condition called Diabetes has almost reached epidemic levels in the country. An effective therapy in reducing oxidative stress involved in type2 diabetes, yoga should be incorporated in the management plan of all affected patients.
The term Sarvangasana or Shoulder-stand is derived from three Sanskrit terms: Sarva means all, Anga means portion and Asana means yoga posture. The practice of this technique is regarded as very important for those with diabetes. This technique involves lifting your legs from the supine position and then gradually extending it behind your head. Always remember to exhale and then lift your legs. After the final position is attained, you can breathe in normal pattern. However, it is advisable to avoid this posture if you have high blood pressure or any serious heart condition.

Popularly known as the Cobra Pose, this technique is highly beneficial in the treatment of diabetes. To do this, lie flat on your stomach with your legs straight, feet together and toes pointed out. You palms should be placed on the ground directly below your shoulders. Following a deep inhalation, slowly lift your head, neck and upper abdomen with the help of mild arm support. Try to stretch as far as possible and then look upwards. Maintain this position and hold your breath for a few seconds. Exhale and then gradually return to your original position.

Practicing Dhanurasana is said to be beneficial for diabetes as it improves the functioning of your pancreas and intestines. With your stomach on the floor, your arms extended and your chin on the floor; slowly bend your legs backwards towards your hips. Next, use your hands to the ankles. Now, with a deep inhalation, raise your head, chest and thigh at the same time. While performing this, ensure that your arms are maintained in straight position and your spine assumes an arch shape. Before returning to the starting position, exhale and start reversing movements.

Besides strengthening your neck, back and waist; Shalabhasana is found to be extremely beneficial in the treatment of diabetes. Regular practice of this posture helps to control the BMI and facilitate glycemic control in type2 diabetic patients. From a prone (stomach on the floor) position, raise your extended legs upwards and stretch them as far as you can. Look straight ahead and avoid bending your toes and knees. Hold this position for a few seconds and then release

Also known as the "forward seated bend", this technique is known to stimulate the functions of the pancreas, kidney and liver. Hence, practicing this is considered beneficial for diabetics. For this, extend your legs completely on the yoga mat while seating. Exhale and then move forward to touch your toes with your fingers and your knees with your head. Initially, this position may be difficult to attain but gradually you can master this step with regular practice.

Trikonasana or triangle position is a must for those attempting to control their diabetes with yoga. With your legs spread apart in standing position, spread your hands on both the sides along the height of your shoulder. As you exhale, bend towards your side to touch the big toe of your right leg with your right fingers. Hold this position for a few second and then repeat the same for your left side.

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