The colon is sometimes referred to as the big bowel or the large intestine. It is an organ in the human body that is part of the digestive system (also known as the digestive tract). The digestive system is a collection of organs that enable us to consume and utilize our bodies to power our bodies. The colon is critical to how our bodies process the food we consume.
Here’s how food moves through your body
- Food starts in the mouth, where it is chewed into smaller bits by the teeth. When food is swallowed, it goes through the esophagus, which links to the stomach.
- Food is further broken down into liquid in the stomach and then transported to the small intestines (intestine).
- Food breakdown continues in the small intestine with the help of the pancreas, liver, and gallbladder. All of the essential vitamins and minerals in meals are absorbed here.
- What’s left behind, which is mainly liquid, is subsequently absorbed by the colon. In the colon, water is absorbed. Bacteria break down the leftover material in the colon. The colon then transports the remaining fabric to the rectum.
The rectum acts as a waste storage facility—muscles in the rectum push waste, known as stool, out of the body through the anus. Healthy eating is excellent for your general health, but a low-calorie, high-fiber diet rich in fruits and vegetables is essential for a healthy colon. Exercise and healthy behaviors, such as avoiding excessive drinking and smoking, are necessary for optimal colon health. If your colon isn’t functioning correctly, you may feel bloating, gas, discomfort, constipation, or diarrhea.
Consult with your doctor about colorectal cancer. Colorectal cancer is preventive, treatable, and frequently curable if discovered early. Inquire with your doctor about the kind of screening test you should have and when you should have it.
Take Care of Your Colon
A healthy colon may also affect your other digestive organs. If your colon is healthy, you will be more physically powerful and mentally resilient while fighting disease. Fiber is needed to support regular bowel movements and reduce feelings of fullness. Therefore adults should consume 25-35 grams of fiber per day. If you keep items moving through your colon, you will help to lower your chance of colon-related disease.
Dietary fiber is mainly found in nuts, peanuts, berries, legumes, beans, broccoli, carrots, pears, peaches, and peas, and that’s why they’re great for colon health. Try to include these healthy food options into your daily diet. Fruits, veggies, and whole grains have also been linked to a reduced risk of colon cancer due to a diet rich in these food components. Due to the vitamins and antioxidants in these foods and the high fiber content, a diet rich in these foods is connected to a lower risk of weight gain and colon-related illness.
If you are not well hydrated, toxins may build in your body. People who drink at least eight glasses of water every day may move toxins and waste through their intestines more quickly. Establishing water goals throughout the day or tracking how much water you drink may help you remain hydrated.
Consistent bowel motions may be encouraged by regular exercise. The increased blood flow and circulation improves the overall effectiveness of your GI system. Practice, particularly more strenuous ones, has been found in studies to decrease the chance of having some digestive issues significantly. It is advised that you begin having colonoscopies around the age of 50. Polyps and abnormalities that cause colon cancer may be removed to halt the illness’s growth or spread, making colon cancer a highly curable condition if detected early.
Individuals whose direct family member has been diagnosed with colon cancer or polyps should begin having colonoscopies at the age of 40 or 10 years before your family member’s diagnosis.
Even though there are more screening methods for colon cancer, a colonoscopy remains the gold standard since it identifies colon cancer and discovers and eliminates polyps, which are the precursors of colon cancer. An alternative would be to get a convenient at-home colonoscopy test.
We’re going to finish with taking tests because it’s so essential. Following the appropriate colon cancer screening recommendations for you based on your age, risk factors, and family history is one of the most critical cancer preventive measures. A colonoscopy is more than just a screening procedure. It may prevent cancer by detecting precancerous abnormalities called polyps and eliminating them before they become cancerous.