By Atul Vyas
The working of the digestive tract is fascinating in the body. It is basically a tube with two openings running through the body. The tube is similar and has some type of tissue from one end to the other. The digestive tract begins with the mouth, the first place where the body begins to break food in order to extract nutrition.
The teeth grind the food and salivary glands release saliva that contains enzymes to start the digestion process. The longer one chews the better the effect.
The condition of the tongue in one’s mouth reveals a lot about digestion as the body excretes some wastes through the tongue. Any coating on the tongue signals the presence of toxins in one’s system. Therefore it is essential to preserve the hygiene and health of the tongue.
There are very specific yogic techniques for keeping the tongue healthy. One of the best techniques is called Jivha bandh or the tongue lock. Bandh or lock means contraction of the inner organ of the body. The bandhs have a profound beneficial effect on the body, mind, and feelings. In Jivha bandh the tongue is pressed against the roots of front teeth and locked, thus aptly called, Jivha bandh or tongue lock.
- Sit in any comfortable yogic sitting posture, keeping the back straight
- Press the tip of the tongue against the upper front teeth
- Let the entire tongue touch the palate
- With the tongue touching the roots of the upper teeth open the mouth wide
- Feel the stretch in the folded membrane in Frenal attachments
- Breathe normally through the nose and not through the mouth which is kept open in this bandh or lock
- Keep the gaze on the tip of the nose
- Keep the lock for 5 breaths or as per one’s capacity then release
By the stimulation of the carotid body and sinus nerves, the blood pressure comes under control.
Functioning of the thyroid or parathyroid gland is improved
Beneficial in sore throat
The efficiency of larynx is improved
Salivary glands become more efficient
The face becomes more radiant and glowing
Note of Caution
It should not be performed if there is pain in the jaws, painful swelling, or irritation in the throat region.
(The author likes to be called a “Yoga Scientist.” He is a celebrity yoga trainer and has trained several top Hollywood and Bollywood stars. He has trained for years under many eminent yoga gurus including his illustrious mother Daya Vyas, the first lady yoga guru of India.)