Keeping Your Colon Healthy

Spring has sprung, making it the perfect time to clean out your closets and your house for warmer weather. Springtime signifies renewal, growth, sunshine and new beginnings after the darkness of winter. But did you know spring is also the perfect time to renew your health and detoxify your body, specifically your colon? Last month, we celebrated Colon Awareness Month in effort to learn strategies to decrease our risk of colorectal cancer. However, spring is still a perfect time to naturally cleanse your colon and provide the internal “closet cleaning” our bodies need daily. Here are some tips to keep your colon healthy and clean, sweeping away the unnecessary toxins and junk this spring:

—Aim for 25-35 grams of dietary fiber per day in your diet and if you are new to fiber in your diet, increase the amount slowly and be sure to drink at least 64 ounces of water per day to flush out your system and keep your GI tract moving.

—For every 10 grams of fiber you consume in your diet, you decrease the risk of colon cancer by approximately 10%. For reference, 10 grams of fiber is about the equivalent of 1 cup of beans.

—Incorporate fiber filled foods daily including fruits (especially those with the skin or the peel such as apples, peaches and high fiber berries), vegetables, beans, 100% whole grains, nuts and seeds.

—Be on the lookout for fiber infused foods such as energy bars, breads, waters, cereals and more. Many foods today are adding fiber but may have alias’ that you are not aware of! Look for words such as “chicory root extract”, “inulin” and “prebiotic fiber”, on food labels as these words typically indicate added fiber to a food.

—Limit the amount of processed meats in your diet. Cut back on foods such as lunch meats, hot dogs, bacon, sausage and other high sodium meats.