In just a few hours one (or both) of two things is going to happen. (1) You’re going to put out a big bowl of candy to give to trick or treaters; (2) your children are going to arrive home with their trick or treating haul. Suffice it to say that most of us will indulge in Halloween candy once or twice during the coming days.
Today’s post is written by Anna Quinn, a yoga instructor, writer and regular reader of my blog.
Did you know that the human body is built to cleanse itself of waste that can make you sick? Now that doesn’t give you a free pass to pound back a whole Halloween bag of goodies this Wednesday evening. But it does mean that you have the power to combat the effects of all those empty calories with a quick 15-minute yoga routine.
Yoga postures, or “asanas”, combat the negative effects of a sugar-filled evening because let’s, face it; we’ve all woken up with mini chocolate bar wrappers stuck to our wigs! The good news is that your body already has the systems in place to eliminate toxins:
- The Lymphatic System—stimulates lymph fluid via movement (so exercise is key) and flushes toxins out through the bloodstream.
- The Digestive System—which processes the food we eat by separating nutrients and eliminating waste.
- The Circulatory System—responsible for the delivery of oxygen-rich blood and waste elimination from cells.
The following yoga workout proactively encourages detoxification, circulation, and flushes out the toxins from a Halloween candy binge…
1. Forward bend
The motion of bending at the waist compresses the abdominal organs and eliminates waste by stimulating the digestive system. To perform a safe forward bend:
- Sit facing forward with a straight back and legs extended straight
- Ensure a slight bend at the knees to take stress off knees and lower back
- Hinge forward at the hips, reaching head and heart forward
- Grasp the backs of the knees or the soles of the feet
2. Seated yoga twists
The twisting motion squeezes the abdominal organs and stimulates digestion! To perform a yoga twist:
- Sit cross-legged on the floor and twisting the body to the right
- Come back to centre and repeat on the left side
- A twist works by literally wringing the liver and kidneys out a like a sponge, squeezing out unhealthy toxins in the blood and cleansing the abdominal organs with fresh, clean blood when the twist is released.
3. Cat/cow pose
These two poses work collaboratively to encourage healthy spinal alignment and gently massaging the belly. To perform a cat/cow:
- Come to a tabletop position on all fours, with the hands under the shoulders and the knees under the hips
- As you inhale, lift your head and tailbone, letting your belly dip towards the floor
- As you exhale, tuck your tailbone, round your back towards the ceiling and drop your head Alternate gently between the two poses letting your breath guide you
4. Yoga Inversions
Placing the heart over the head encourages the drainage of lymph waste from the lower body. Inversions like yoga headstand, shoulder stand, bridge, or simply lying on the floor with your legs up a wall will soothe the immune system, nervous system, and reduce stress. My personal favorite inversion is bridge pose due to its soothing effect on abdominal organs, lungs and thyroid, digestion, and back muscles. To perform bridge:
- Lay flat on your back and bend your knees, feet flat the floor
- Reach your arms alongside your body with your fingertips grazing the backs of your heels
- Exhale, pressing your feet and arms down and lifting your tailbone until your thighs are parallel to the floorHold the pose for 10 breaths and release on an exhale, rolling the spine gently down to the floor
5. Corpse pose
I end all of my yoga classes with Savasana because it helps the body let go of the tension from your practice:
- Lie flat on your back with your arms and legs resting comfortably, palms facing up and legs, ankles and feet slightly splayed
- Close your eyes, let your jaw and tongue hang loose, and allow your breath to become natural
- Focus on peaceful, calming thoughts
- Rest in corpse for 5 minutes, then awaken the body by gently wiggling the fingers and toes
Anna Quinn is a staff writer for AndGeeks . A woman who admits she’s addicted to her smart phone, video gaming, and really any new and neat consumer electronic, Anna decided to put her passion to pen and earn a living writing about technology and consumer electronic reviews to help the average person make a smart purchase. When she’s not obsessed with a new gadget, Anna likes to balance her type A personality with a little hot yoga.