Contemplating getting a colonoscopy soon? If you’ve already been reading up about it, chances are, you’ve come across information about its invasive nature and the intensive preparation it involves, both of which could have made you shudder. Regardless, it’s all worth the hassle. Colonoscopy, with its utility and versatility, is a life-saving tool, which studies confirm can reduce the risk for colon cancer-related deaths by up to 61 percent.
Emptying the contents of your colon (bowel preparation) is central to ensuring the success of your colonoscopy. If you don’t do it right, lesions and polyps can be missed; the procedure may take longer, thereby putting you at a greater risk for complications; or the entire process may have to be repeated, which means you will need to do the bowel preparation all over again.
To avoid these hassles, make sure to follow the detailed preparation instructions your GI specialist will give you to a tee. Your preparation instructions will include information about what foods to eat and to avoid in the days leading up to your procedure. Read on to learn about what your pre-colonoscopy diet plan will likely consist.
A Few Days Before Colonoscopy
You will need to start cleansing your bowel three to four days prior to your procedure. During this time, you will need to be on a low-fiber diet, which means you can’t eat raw fruits or vegetables, whole grains, nuts, seeds, dried fruits, etc. It may seem counterintuitive, but high-fiber foods can get undigested when they make their way to the colon, and can consequently interfere with the procedure.
Here’s what you can eat days before your colonoscopy:
- Canned fruits and fruits without seeds and skin
- Fish, chicken, and lean meat
- Well-cooked vegetables
- White rice, pasta, white bread, and products made with refined flour
The Day Before Colonoscopy
The day before your procedure, you’re not supposed to eat solid foods: adhere to a clear, liquid diet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. This means you should avoid drinks that you can’t see through; instead, only take the following:
- Apple or white grape juice
- Clear broth or bouillon
- Clear sports drinks or carbonated beverages
- Plain water
Your GI specialist will prescribe a strong laxative, which you need to take the night before your exam. Your doctor will likely recommend that you do split dosing: drink a half-gallon of liquid laxative the night before and the rest six hours prior to your appointment.
Colonoscopy in California
At InSite Digestive Health Care, we offer colonoscopy and other colon cancer screening methods, as part of our goal to encourage, equip, and empower the people in the communities we serve to be proactive about their bowel health.
Our highly regarded, board-certified GI specialists take pleasure in providing patients with useful information about colonoscopy and other screening methods and recommending the most suitable option based on their individual needs and preferences.
To schedule a colonoscopy appointment, call our clinic nearest, you or use this convenient appointment request form.