March is Colon Health Awareness Month, so if you haven't paid much thought to your colon's needs, now is the perfect opportunity to educate yourself on how the state of your colon, or lower intestine, can have a significant impact on your well-being. The colon is the main site in your body for waste removal, so naturally, a lot of unwanted material passes through this region. It is believed that occasional cleansing can give your colon—and overall system—an added health boost. But just what is colon cleansing and how is it done?
Is Detoxing Healthy or Harmful?
The idea behind cleansing or detoxing is that it can help remove toxins left behind in your system that remain even after normal elimination. Some people think that colon cleansing is unnecessary because your body naturally cleanses itself through regular bowel movements. However, proponents of periodic detox or cleansing believe that toxins in your colon can be the cause of various symptoms such as bloating, irritable bowels, and even certain allergies. Regular cleansing helps flush these toxins out and may support weight management, promote a healthy balance of stomach bacteria, and even improve your mental outlook. One method of detoxing is with a water diet for two days, which is one of the quickest ways. But it can also be the most challenging method because water is the only thing you consume during this type of cleanse and it can put excess strain on your body. It may also leave you more vulnerable to dehydration because along with flushing out toxins, you're also releasing water from your system. Another method of detoxing involves using juice cleansers or a strict diet of fruits and vegetables. These methods are meant to introduce more nutrients into your system while you're cleansing. Brown rice, for example, is high in B vitamins and fiber that aids your regular bowel movements.
Cleansing the Healthy Way
Using the right ingredients for a colon cleanse can clear away toxins without flushing out the electrolytes your body needs. Magnesium hydroxide has been touted as a healthy cleansing agent because it draws water into the intestines, softening waste matter and allowing it to move through your system more easily. Another common ingredient used for gentle detoxing is peppermint leaf. Used to support colon health for centuries, peppermint leaf calms the muscles of the stomach and intestines to allow the food and waste to pass through more quickly. In one study conducted on 57 people with digestive concerns, patients were either given a placebo or capsules containing peppermint leaf twice a day for four weeks. Of the people who took peppermint leaf, 75% showed fewer digestive health symptoms at the end of the study. The superfruit, acai, also doubles as a healthy cleansing agent. Rich in antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, acai fruit contains dietary fibers and complex amino acids. The dietary fibers help stimulate digestion, along with supporting your body's natural cleansing and detoxing methods.
Living healthy Through Good Digestion
Your colon has many responsibilities. Cleansing your system and supporting your colon health with the right ingredients can enhance your immune system, give you more natural energy, and help your body absorb the vitamins and nutrients from your food that it needs to perform each day. While colon health awareness may only receive a month of recognition, supporting a healthy digestive system and colon should be a year-round affair.