Yogasanas like Shoulder stand, Inverted Pose, Plough pose, Fish pose, Camel pose, The cobra pose, Bridge formation pose, Headstand pose, Bow pose help balance and regulate the functioning of the thyroid gland. Ujjayi Pranayama also works wonders by re-balancing metabolism and improving reflex pathways within the throat to cure thyroid imbalance.
Thyroid disorders are common across the world, with women more affected then men. While yoga may not be able to completely cure the condition, it can keep the glands healthy, regulate metabolism, and help reduce the symptoms of hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism.
Yoga For Thyroid
1. Sarvangasana (Shoulder Stand)
Shoulder stand is the most suitable and effective asana for the thyroid gland. When you practice this stand, there is a pressure on the gland. The thyroid is one of the largest blood suppliers and practicing this posture can improve its function by improving circulation and squeezing out stagnant secretions.
Matsyasana (Fish Pose)
After Sarvangasana, you can perform matsyasana, and them move on to halasana. Matsya means fish, in the final pose, the asana take the form of fish. Hence, the name Matsyasana. This pose provides adequate stretching to the neck region thereby stimulating the thyroid gland.
Halasana (Plough Pose)
Hala means plough. The pose resembles the Indian plough and is hence called halasana. This yoga exercise gives compression to the neck and stimulates the thyroid glands.
Viparitakarani (Inverted Pose)
The meaning of Viparita is “reverse” and Karani translates to “by which.” Viparitakarni helps balance the functioning of the thyroid and eases the complication caused by hypoactive thyroid.
Ustrasana (Camel Pose)
This asana stretches the neck.
Bhujangasana (The Cobra Pose)
There are some sorts of compressing and stretching in the neck while performing advanced Bhujangasana, which helps in regulating thyroid glands.
Setubandh Sarvangasana (Bridge Formation Pose)
This is one of the most important yoga asanas for thyroid disorders. While performing Setubandh Sarvangasana, if the practitioner succeeds in forming a good bridge, the neck is stretched very well, which is good for the thyroid gland.
Sirshasana acts directly on the thyroid glands, helping to balance the metabolic functions and bring about wakefulness and alertness, but without excessive nervous energy.
Dhanurasana (Bow Pose)
The bow poses massages the thyroid gland effectively and compels the gland to produce required amount of hormone to control metabolism.
Other effective asanas include Surya Namskara, Pavanamuktasana, yoga mudras, Suptavajrasana, and all backward-bending asanas.
Note: Although these yoga asanas are beneficial, these practices should be avoided in case of severe hyperthyroidism, physical debility, or an enlarged goiter.
Pranayama For Thyroid diseases
The most effective pranayama for thyroid problems is Ujjayi pranayama. It works on the throat area and is relaxing. Its stimulating effects are most probably due to stimulation of ancient reflex pathways within the throat area, which are controlled by the brainstem and hypothalamus.
This practice also gives us direct access into the pranic and psychic network, the substructure of metabolic activity. Nadi shodhana pranayama is useful in re-balancing metabolism.
Performing Ujjayi Pranayama
To practice Ujjayi Pranayama for thyroid problems, you need to breathe from your mouth, rather than through your nose.
- Sit in a comfortable yoga meditative pose, like the Sukhasana (The Easy Pose) or the Padmasana (The Lotus Pose)
- Draw in a long, deep breath, using both nostrils.
- Exhale thoroughly through your mouth, producing a “HHAAA” sound from your throat.
- Repeat the exercise 5 to 10 times, in one go. Start off by practicing it 3 times a day and gradually build it up to 10.
Note: Ujjayi pranayama should be practiced no more than 11 times a day.