Are Yoga Asanas Good for Diabetes?

Shamlee Pathare

May 12, 2023

Yoga is essential to keep you healthy both mentally and physically and you might already know that. But do you know, doing it without the right guidance may not bring about the results you expect? There are specific categories, and today we explore yoga for diabetes.

Diabetes management requires lifestyle changes along with a healthy diet and exercise regime.  Studies have recognised the role of Yoga in lowering the risk of diabetes. 

Therefore yoga is not just a type of workout, it is something your body requires for the advancement of your better living. So if your concern is how to do yoga for diabetes, here are 7 effective yoga asanas.  

7 Yoga Asanas That Will Help With Diabetes

1. Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskar)

Sun Salutations (Surya Namaskar)

While talking about yoga for diabetes, the first pose that is extremely beneficial for diabetic patients is sun salutations. It is a perfect way to get your heart rate up and stretch your entire body. Moreover, sun salutations are a favorable warm-up before you do any asana or just go for a walk.

You can also find variations in sun salutations. Sun salutations improve blood sugar level, blood circulation, and increase flexibility. 


  1. Stand straight at the front of your mat, keep your abdomen pulled in, and join your palms together. Inhale while raising your hands and stretch your hands to the backside. Exhale and go forward, lengthen your spine, and slowly go all the way down. Look down and relax your neck. 
  2. Inhale and take your right leg back with your right knee on the floor. Ensure that your left knee is at the 90° angle and your palms are flat on the floor. Look straight with your head. Hold your breath from this position and take your left leg back, and come to a plank position. 
  3. Keep your body in one straight line. Exhale and get your knees down, get your chest and chin down. And get your hips down slowly. Inhale and slowly raise your upper body, and look up with your head. Then, exhale when you lift. Get your body into the inverted V pose. Your heels and palms should be on the floor, and then, try to lengthen your spine. 
  4. Get your right leg forward while inhaling. Get your left leg in front of your body and  exhale. Bend down and touch your toes, then place your palms on the floor, and stretch. Inhale, raise your hands, stretch your back, exhale, and join your palms together. 
  5. Repeat with the left side.  

Practice Sun Salutations for 4 to 8 rounds slowly. 

2. Lying Down Body Twist (Folded leg Lumbar stretch)

Lying Down Body Twist (Folded leg Lumbar stretch)

The lying down body twist is the second favorite when it comes to yoga for diabetes. It improves spinal mobility and improves digestion. Though this pose forces on abdominal organs, it can help in managing blood sugar levels.  


  1. Lay down flat on your back, extend your arms sideways by your palms facing down. 
  2. Bring your left knees up at the level of your chest and bend it over the right side. Try to bring your knee at the hip level. 
  3. Stay in this pose for 30 seconds and repeat with the opposite side. 

3. Bow Pose (Dhanurasana) 

Bow Pose (Dhanurasana) 

Bow pose is a cure to fatigue. It strengthens your abdominal muscles, reduces constipation and helps manage blood sugar levels.


  1. Lie down on your stomach with your feet slightly apart, almost parallel to your hips, and place your arms on the side of your body.
  2. Slowly, fold your knees up and hold your ankles with your hands.
  3. Breathe in and lift your chest off the ground and pull your legs up and stretch it out. You should feel the stretch on your arms and thighs.
  4. Hold the pose for 12-15 seconds, paying attention to your breath as you take long, deep ones.
  5. Slowly bring your chest and legs back to the ground, release your hold on the ankles, and relax with your hands on the side. Repeat for a few sets.

4. Seated-forward Bend (Paschimottanasana)

Seated-forward Bend (Paschimottanasana)

If you want to practice a therapeutic approach in terms of yoga for diabetes, here is the yoga asana for you. Seated forward bend is an excellent option for people with diabetes. It helps manage diabetes, reduces blood pressure. People also love this pose because it helps in weight loss. Besides, it can relieve stress, fatigue, headache, and anxiety. 


  1. Sit down and extend your legs straight. 
  2. Inhale and pull your hands up. 
  3. Bring your hands down and try to touch your toes with your hands without bending your knees. 
  4. Touch your chin to your chest. 
  5. Remain in the pose for 60 seconds with normal breathing.    

5. Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani)

Legs up the wall (Viparita Karani)

It reduces stress, controls blood pressure, and lowers blood sugar levels. Additionally, it is an ideal pose for relaxation as it boosts circulation and energy levels.  


  1. Get a towel, fold it, and sit on it alongside the wall. 
  2. Lay on your back and bring your legs up, and create a 90° angle while touching the wall. 
  3. Relax your head, neck, throat, and chin.
  4. Stretch your arms and keep your palms facing upwards. 
  5. Stay in this pose for 5-10 minutes. 
  6. Post that, slide down your legs slowly.  

Repeat on the other side. 

6. Bhujangasana (Upward Facing Dog Pose)

Bhujangasana (Upward Facing Dog Pose)

When your triceps brachii, spinal extensors, and quadriceps muscles work together, it enhances muscle strength. Then, it ultimately lowers blood pressure and blood sugar. It helps improve posture and is mild therapy for asthma patients. 


  1. Lie on your abdomen and keep your legs straight. 
  2. Keeping your forearms perpendicular to the floor, place your arm on the floor beside the last ribcage. 
  3. Press your arms to lift your body. 
  4. Create pressure on your feet and firmness in your hips. 
  5. Look straight and hold the position for 30-40 seconds with normal breathing.

#7 Corpse Pose (Shavasana) 

Corpse Pose (Shavasana)

Corpse pose is the final step in yoga for diabetes. You may start with any yoga asana, but you must finish with a shavasana. Studies have shown that it helps better manage blood sugar fluctuations  and blood pressure, calming your body and mind. It will take your body to a meditative stage where you will no longer be able to feel stress. Moreover, it is a traditional way to finish your yoga session. 


  1. Lay down straight, spread your feet a bit wider, and keep your arms in a rest position. 
  2. Create a Y shape with your body by aligning your torso in a straight line. 
  3. Feel your breath, hands, legs, feet, palms, abdomen, eyes, ears, and every part of your body. 
  4. Release the stress and relax. 
  5. Hold this position for 15-20 minutes.

The HealthifyMe Note

With a high prevalence of diabetes in India, natural and effective ways to manage it are important in order to avoid long term complications. Along with a balanced diet and exercise, practising yoga regularly not only helps in stress management, but also lowers blood pressure and blood sugar levels. You can start with yoga asanas in the comfort of your home and doing it regularly will help in better diabetes management and improve quality of life too.


Yoga can be a lifestyle for some people and a way to keep the body and mind healthy for others.

Experts and studies prove a 10 min regular yoga session can be helpful for diabetes management. If you are skeptical about it, do give it a try, and see the results for yourself. However, it demands complete commitment from your side and your lifestyle choices. If you are serious about keeping your health on top, follow this guide based on yoga for diabetes. 

Disclaimer: The purpose of this article is just to disperse knowledge and spread awareness. It does not intend to replace medical advice by professionals. For further information please contact our certified nutritions Here.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q. Is yoga beneficial for diabetes patients?

A. Yes, yoga can be extremely beneficial for diabetes patients. If you cannot do all the yoga poses, just pick any 4 out of those mentioned above. And keep practicing regularly.

Q. Does yoga help in balancing blood sugar levels permanently?

A. Yes, yoga can help you in balancing the blood sugar level permanently. Yet, it is imperative you practice yoga regularly. If you cannot give one hour to yoga, at least do it for 30 minutes daily.

Q. What is the best pose of yoga for diabetes?

A. The best yoga pose for diabetic patients is Sun Salutations. If you practice 10 to 12 rounds of Sun Salutations, it will gradually help you to fight diabetes along with regular Pranayama like Nadi suddhi pranayama & Bhramari Pranayama.

Q. How does yoga affect diabetes?

A. Yoga stretches your body, stresses your muscles, and relaxes your body. It gets your internal abdominal organs together that helps in maintaining the blood sugar level.

Q. Can yoga cure type 2 diabetes?

A. Yoga poses are a cure for type 1 diabetes. Whereas in the case of type 2 diabetes, it prevents the development of rejuvenating pancreatic cells. When yoga asanas stretches your pancreas, it helps in balancing the insulin production. And that eventually prevents type 2 diabetes. 


  1. Therapeutic Role of Yoga in Type 2 Diabetes
  2. Impact of a 10 minute Seated Yoga Practice in the Management of Diabetes
  3. Additional benefit of yoga to standard lifestyle modification on blood pressure in prehypertensive subjects: a randomized controlled study
  4. Effect of Yogic technique Shavasana in T2DM patients on BP, blood sugar fluctuations and Sleep Quality

About the Author

Shamlee seemed destined to take up a career in Yoga, having started practicing the discipline at the tender age of 3. She completed her Master's and her Bachelor's degrees in Yoga Therapy from the S-VYASA University. A specialist in Diabetes and Stress Management, Shamlee has conducted research on how Yoga aids individuals with common ailments at AIIMS, New Delhi. A former member of the Indian Yoga team, she is presently a Yoga Team Lead at HealthifyMe. Shamlee believes Yoga is the answer to any individual's health issues, whether they are physical or mental.

Related Articles


5 responses to “Are Yoga Asanas Good for Diabetes?”

  1. thank you for the lovely article. I am type 2 for 20 yrs. I am considering doing the 7 exercises you prescribed seriously.

  2. My mother got diagnosed with diabetes but she is not that so old. She is 40 plus and I think she can still do these yoga exercises. Thank you very much! Gonna show this article to her.

Add Your Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Your health is our priority. Talk to one of our experts and get the best plan for you today.
Chat With Us