New Year, New You: Top Resolutions for Better Digestive Health
As the new year approaches, many of us take the opportunity to reflect on the past year and set new goals for the year ahead. One area that is often overlooked but crucial for overall health and well-being is digestive health. Poor digestive health can lead to a host of issues, including abdominal pain, bloating, diarrhea, constipation, and even more serious conditions like colon cancer. Here are some top resolutions for better digestive health in the new year.
Eat a healthy, balanced diet
A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and fiber can do wonders for your digestive system. Aim to incorporate a variety of whole, unprocessed foods into your meals and avoid overindulging in unhealthy, processed foods.
Drinking plenty of water is essential for proper digestion. Aim to drink around six to eight cups (8 ounces) of water daily, and more if you are exercising or spending time in hot weather.
Get regular exercise
Exercise helps to stimulate the digestive system and can also help to reduce constipation. Aim for at least 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking or cycling, on most days of the week.
Stress can have a negative impact on your digestive system, leading to issues like irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and acid reflux. Make time for relaxation and stress-reducing activities like yoga, meditation, or deep breathing to help keep your digestive system functioning properly.
Schedule a colonoscopy
Colonoscopies are an important tool in detecting and preventing colon cancer and are typically recommended for adults older than 45. If you are due for a colonoscopy or have a family history of colon cancer, make sure to schedule one in the new year.
Get enough sleep
Adequate sleep is essential for overall health and can help keep your digestive system running smoothly. Aim for seven to nine hours of sleep per night to help support your digestive health.
Practice good hygiene
Proper hand-washing and food handling practices can help to prevent the spread of digestive disorders like norovirus and food poisoning. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly before and after handling food, and cook foods to their recommended internal temperatures to help prevent foodborne illness.
These simple changes can improve your digestive health and set you up for a healthier, happier new year. Don’t forget to schedule that colonoscopy if it’s due — it’s an important step in maintaining good digestive health and preventing serious conditions like colon cancer.