When you have diabetes, it's common to have gastrointestinal issues. Symptoms like food sensitivities, gas, bloating, nausea, and early fullness are prevalent and not often discussed.
There are many causes and degrees of GI distress with diabetes. It's important to rule out hypothyroidism and celiac disease as causes. Gastroparesis, a delayed stomach emptying, is another common culprit.
I went through my own journey about ten years ago with terrible digestive distress and blood sugar swings that would creep up hours after a meal. This cycle made diabetes harder to manage because I could not anticipate my insulin dosage.
Up to fifty percent of people with diabetes have GI issues and cannot pinpoint the cause of their distress. If you have diabetes long enough, microvascular damage disrupts enzyme and acid production and muscular activity responsible for healthy digestion.
Yoga therapy offers some pretty powerful strategies to soothe your tummy if you're in a flare-up, protect, and even potentially reverse the damage by strengthening the vagus nerve.
This practice focuses on two essential elements: abdominal stimulation and parasympathetic activation. The compression and relaxation of the abdomen will help move stagnation. Long-gentle exhales, and exhale suspension, the pause after the exhale, strengthen vagal predominance, and help restore function.
Abdominal Compression with a Ball - to awaken and stimulate the gut
Ardha apanasana - to compress the abdomen one side at a time
Cakravakasana - two part exhale - to lengthen the exhale and compress the abdomen
Uttanasana - two part exhale - to lengthen the exhale and compress the abdomen
Parsvottonasana - one arm variation - to lengthen the exhale and compress the abdomen
Parivritti trikonasana - with suspension - to turn on PSNS and compress abdomen
Uddiyana bandha - to compress and relax the abdomen
Abdominal vacuum - bridge pose - to learn abdominal vacuum, compress and relax the abdomen.
Evan Rachel Soroka