Get scoped during March, National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month |

Get scoped during March, National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month

TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. — Did you know that colorectal cancer is the second leading killer in the United States? Early diagnosis is key to a beneficial outcome; so be proactive and begin regular screening from age 50 through age 75.

The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force recommends the following testing options: a high sensitivity fecal occult blood test every year, a sigmoidoscopy every five years, or a colonoscopy every 10 years.

During a colonoscopy, precancerous growths can be removed, cutting the risk of dying from colon cancer by 50 percent (New England Journal of Medicine). Screening recommendations can vary based on family history and other conditions.

So, if you’re turning 50, happy 50th birthday to you and the other 12,500 Americans who turn 50 every day. Gift yourself a visit to your gastroenterologist to discuss your colonoscopy.

A colonoscopy can be associated with anxiety for many people. But once you familiarize yourself with the procedure, you may feel relieved the process is quick and efficient. (Search WebMD for great video footage of an actual colonoscopy.)

For most people, the fear of preparing for the colonoscopy is worse than the fear of the procedure itself. One full day of clear liquids, no solid food, and a strong laxative keeps you close to home.

With planning you can get enough calories and protein to enjoy a high-functioning day. Your brain will be alert and you will even have enough energy for a moderate workout.


Support your blood sugar levels by drinking enough calories, with a bit of protein, every two hours. Choose clear liquids without any red or purple dyes. You can increase the amount you drink based on what you need for brain function and exercise.

Consume two to four of the “meals” below:

1 cup prepared lime, lemon, or orange Jell-O

8 oz. Gatorade Recovery Beverage Post Game Drink (kiwi strawberry), or similar protein water drink

2 cups chicken, beef, or vegetable broth

Every two hours, sip on 8-16 ounces of regular or Recovery Gatorade, apple juice or white grape juice.

Drink water, tea, black coffee, clear carbonated beverages, and have popsicles (no red or purple) as desired.

If you eat a total of one box of prepared Jell-O, 32 oz. broth, 32 oz. Gatorade, 2 -16.9 oz. bottles of Gatorade Recovery and 16 oz. apple juice, you will have consumed 1,540 calories plus 52 grams of protein. That’s enough to keep you fueled and feeling good.


Learn how you can support your health and reduce your risk of colorectal cancer by joining us for a free lecture and food tasting on Friday, March 21 at noon in the Community Room at Incline Village Community Hospital, or Monday, March 24 at 5:30 p.m. in the Eskridge Conference Room at Tahoe Forest Hospital. Dr. Charles Zipkin, MD, and Betsy Taylor, RD, will share the benefits of screening and prevention with cooking tips and delicious cancer prevention foods.

Betsy Taylor, RD is a Wellness Dietitian for Tahoe Forest Hospital. For more information, contact us at 530-587-3769, ext. 7126 or email

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