The colon is one of the most important parts of the body. It aids in digestion, vitamin and mineral absorption, and waste removal. Because these are vital aspects of how the body function, taking care of it is crucial. When there are issues with the colon, it can show up in a variety of ways including cramps, diarrhea, bloating, blood in the stool, and fatigue.
But, luckily, there are a variety of ways you can keep your colon healthy and prevent a number of serious conditions.
Exercise regularly is well-known to benefit the heart and help you maintain your weight but it can also keep your colon healthy as well. Moderate exercise for at least 30 minutes a day at least five days a week can encourage consistent bowel movements, increase blood flow and circulation through the gastrointestinal system, and help lower the risk of colon issues including colon cancer. Exercise can include cardio, strength training, Pilates, yoga, or whatever form of exercise you prefer.
A high-fiber diet can also help you maintain a healthy colon. Consuming 25-35 grams of fiber per day is recommended not only for a healthy colon, but it can also help increase your feeling of fullness and promote regular bowel movements.
Some good sources of fiber include nuts, seeds, lentils, berries, broccoli, apples, and carrots.
You’ll also want to focus on consuming foods with healthy fats like olive oil, avocados, and nuts. And try to limit processed foods and red meat as much as you can. If you’re going for protein, stick to beans, poultry, and fish.
On top of that, whole grains and foods rich in calcium can also benefit your colorectal health. And when your colon is healthy, you decrease your risk of conditions like hemorrhoids and rectal cancer. Try adding leafy greens, yogurt and cheese, and brown rice or barley to your diet.
Drinking eight or more glasses per day can ensure your colon is clean and your digestion runs smoothly. With a clean colon and your digestion working as it should, you’re more likely to prevent some of the issues that can lead to poor colorectal health.
If you tend to forget to drink water during the day, start a journal for your water intake or download a tracking app on your phone to remind you.
Besides drinking enough water, you’ll also want to avoid sugary drinks like soda, energy drinks, and juice.
If you prefer tea, herbal teas like green tea, ginger tea, or peppermint can help reduce inflammation in the colon and keep your digestion working smoothly.
Smoking is well-known to harm the lungs but it can damage the colon as well. It can exacerbate inflammation and lead to a number of gastrointestinal issues. The inflammation can lead to bloating, cramping, constipation, abdominal pain, and diarrhea.
Smoking also significantly increases the risk of colorectal cancer. Smokers are more likely to develop polyps in their colon which can be cancerous. And if you do develop colon cancer, it’s more likely to be fatal if you smoke.
While it can be difficult, there are many resources available to help you quit smoking.
Maintaining your c colorectal health is vital to your overall health and general well-being. A healthy colon not only decreases the risk of colon cancer, but it can also lower the risk of hemorrhoids and rectal cancer.
If you’re concerned about any problem, Arizona Colorectal Experts (ACE Clinic) is here to help. Our experienced staff provides a variety of treatment options including colonoscopies, hemorrhoid treatments, and colorectal surgery to ensure your colon is at its best. To schedule an appointment, please call our Chandler, AZ office at 602-844-5157 or use our online form.