15 Therapeutic Iyengar Yoga Asanas For Diabetes

What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a disease that affects the ability of your body to use blood glucose (blood sugar). Glucose is very important for your health as it provides energy to the cells (muscles and tissues) of your body and brain.

Diabetes causes high blood sugar in your body. The hormone called insulin moves sugar from the blood into your cells which can be used later for energy, when you are affected by diabetes your body either doesn’t use the insulin properly or can’t make enough insulin.

If not treated on time diabetes can cause serious complications such as kidney diseases, heart diseases, stroke, eye diseases, etc. It could lead to even death in severe conditions.

There are 3 main types of diabetes :

  1. Type1 Diabetes -  In this type of diabetes the body can’t produce insulin and the patient needs to be dependent on artificial insulin to survive.
  2. Type 2 Diabetes - In this type of diabetes the body can produce insulin but it can’t use the insulin properly (the cells in the body doesn’t respond to the insulin as like they used to do earlier).
  3. Gestational  Diabetes - It occurs in pregnant women, in this type of diabetes a pregnant woman develops high blood sugar levels.

Causes of Diabetes

The causes and risk factors of diabetes differ in each type of diabetes. Some  common causes of diabetes in each type are as follows:

  1. Type 1 diabetes - The exact cause of type 1 diabetes is not known yet. Doctors around the world say that the immune system attacks and destroys the insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. This removes almost all of the insulin in your body and it increases the level of sugar in your body. Viruses, environmental factors, and genes are also thought to be causing factors of type 1 diabetes.
  2. Type 2 diabetes - It is a result of environmental (lifestyle factors) and genetic factors. Overweight people are also said to be at more risk of acquiring type 2 diabetes. People with high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and sedentary lifestyle are at more risk of type 2 diabetes. It is the most common type of diabetes.
  3. Gestational diabetes - It is a result of hormonal changes in pregnant women. Overweight women are at more risk of this type of diabetes.

Genetics is a common risk factor in all type of diabetes.

Signs and Symptoms of Diabetes

Symptoms of diabetes can be seen early in some cases whereas it could take a much longer time in other cases. Some common signs and symptom of diabetes are:

  1. Extreme hunger
  2. Frequent urination
  3. Increased thirst
  4. Sudden  weight loss
  5. Fatigue
  6. Blurred vision
  7. Presence of ketones in the urine
  8. Weakness
  9. Irritation
  10. Sores take a longer time to heal
  11. Vaginal infections
  12. Skin infections
  13. Gum infections
  14. Decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction and poor muscle strength in males.
  15. Yeast infections, urinary tract infections and skin irritation in women

Therapeutic Iyengar Yoga for Diabetes


  • During the treatment all the asanas will be performed with the help of props.
  • Patients will be treated by the trained yoga teachers & under the guidance of Yogacharya Rajveer Singh Chauhan.
  • The sequence and difficulty level of asanas may vary according to the condition of patients and their respective medical condition.
  • Every person will be advised to perform asanas based on their current health, age and their present capacity to perform asanas.

1. Supta Baddha Konasana

Supta Baddha Konasana with Bolster
This is the first asana which needs to be performed by a diabetes patient because the stomach of a diabetic patient becomes very hard and this asana helps in removing the hardness from the stomach which further helps in performing the other asana. It also helps in proper functioning of the pancreas by increasing the abdominal breathing.

2. Utthita Parivrtta Trikonasana

Utthita Parivrtta Trikonasana
This asana twists the stomach and makes the pancreas to activate which in turn helps in releasing insulin properly.

3. Parivrtta Parsvakonasana

Parivrtta Parsvakonasana by Teacher
This is a twisting asana which activates the pancreas and helps in releasing insulin which previously is not releasing or having less in amount.

4. Ardha Chandrasana

Ardha Chandrasana
This asana activates the solar plexus and pancreas deep inside the stomach.

5. Sirsasana in Baddha Konasana

Salamba Sirsasana in Baddha Konasana
As Hormones are controlled by Pituitary Gland and insulin is also a hormone. So, this asana activates the pituitary glands and enables the pancreas to secrete the right quantity of insulin.

6. Bharadvajasana I

Bharadvajasana (With Chair)
This is a twisting asana and very important for diabetes patients because the pancreas is situated behind our intestines and this asana activates them by twisting.

7. Bharadvajasana II

Bharadvajasana (With Pillar Support)
This is also a twisting asana and a variation of Bhardvajasana I above. This by twisting the body with pillar support makes the deeply hidden pancreas to activate and secrete the right amount of insulin.

8. Ardha Matsyendrasana

Ardha Matsyendrasana
This asana is also a twisting one which activates the pancreas and very much effective by using bricks as we do in Therapeutic Iyengar Yoga.

9. Marichyasana

This asana is a twisting one which activates the pancreas and very much effective by using bricks rather than doing without support.

10. Navasana

This asana reduces stiffness from the stomach part and as a result, helps the hormonal secretion process.

11. Supta Padangusthasana

Supta Padangusthasana
This asana improves the blood circulation and in the internal organs of the stomach.

12. Sarvangasana

This asana also activates the hormones and makes them secrete the right amount of insulin.

13. Halasana

Ardha Halasana
This asana is very effective for the interior stomach that in turn helps the pancreas to get activated and prevents from side effects of diabetes as severe diabetes can cause kidney damage.

14. Setu Bandha Sarvangasana

Setu Bandha Sarvangasana
This asana provides relief to the patient in Mental Stress and improves emotional imbalance.

15. Ujjayi Pranayama

Ujjayi Pranayama with Wooden Pad
Strengthens the immune system and improves the quality of breath. This also prevents from side effects of diabetes.


  • Diabetes is identified by high blood sugar levels in the body.
  • Genetics and environmental factors are the two most common causing factors of diabetes.
  • Frequent urination and extreme thirst are the main symptoms of diabetes in all types.
  • All the asanas must be performed in the proper sequence and  under the guidance of a trained yoga teacher.