Health Mastery Q & A: Can You Say Fiber…?

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    Can you tell me what will clean out my colon? I mean something that will rip all the old waste out of my system. How can I get my body to have regular movements?

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    Q: Can you tell me what will clean out my colon? I mean something that will rip all the old waste out of my system. How can I get my body to have regular movements?

    Dr. Dave: If your goal is to have regular bowel movements, then doing it naturally with a fiber-rich diet and hydration is the way to go.

    There are two main kinds of dietary fiber: soluble and insoluble. Most of it is not digested but they all help reduce the risk of colon cancer, diabetes, heart disease, strokes and other conditions like constipation, hemorrhoids, chronic diarrhea, and fecal incontinence.

    Soluble fiber: fruits, vegetables, oats and oat products, barley, and legumes (peas and beans)

    Insoluble fiber: wheat, wheat bran, rye, and other grains.

    Women should eat about 25 grams and men 30 grams of fiber daily.

    Here are some foods and their dietary fiber amounts in grams. You can copy and paste this to refer to on a regular basis.


    Apple (with skin) 3.5/1 medium-sized apple

    Apricot (fresh) 1.8/3 apricots

    Banana 2.5/1 banana

    Cantaloupe 2.7/half edible portion

    Dates 13.5/1 cup (chopped)

    Grapefruit 1.6/half edible portion

    Grapes 2.6/10 grapes

    Oranges 2.6/1 orange

    Peach (with skin) 2.1/1 peach

    Pear (with skin) 4.6/1 pear

    Pineapple 2.2/1 cup (diced)

    Prunes 11.9/11 dried prunes

    Raisins 2.2/packet

    Strawberries 3.0/1 cup


    Asparagus 1.5/7 spears

    Beans, string, green 3.4/1 cup

    Broccoli 5.0/1 stalk

    Brussels sprouts 4.6/7-8 sprouts

    Cabbage 2.9/1 cup (cooked)

    Carrots 4.6/1 cup

    Cauliflower 2.1/1 cup

    Peas 7.2/1 cup (cooked)

    Potato (with skin)2.3/1 boiled

    Spinach 4.1/1 cup (raw)

    Squash, summer 3.4/1 cup (cooked, diced)

    Sweet potatoes 2.7/1 baked

    Zucchini 4.2/1 cup (cooked, diced)

    Peppers, green 1.0/1 pod

    Tomato 1.8/1 tomato

    Spinach 8.0/1 cup (chopped)


    Baked beans 18.6/1 cup

    Dried peas 4.7/half cup (cooked)

    Kidney beans 7.4/half cup (cooked)

    Pasta and rice cooked

    Macaroni 1.0/1 cup (cooked)

    Rice, brown 2.4/1 cup (cooked)

    Rice, polished 0.6/1 cup (cooked)

    Spaghetti (regular) 1.0/1 cup (cooked)

    Flours and grains

    Bran, oat 8.3/oz

    Bran, wheat 12.4/oz

    Rolled oats 13.7/1 cup (cooked)


    Almonds 3.6/half cup (slivered)

    Peanuts 11.7/1 cup

    Be careful to account for other dietary goals (weight loss, diabetes control, high blood pressure control, kidney problems, allergies, etc) when picking which foods to eat. Keep your calorie goals intact.

    I am personally not a fan of colon cleansers for general health purposes. The proper diet, which includes enough dietary fiber to bulk up the stool and clear the colon, is a natural way to accomplish this without the dangers of electrolyte imbalance and dehydration that can occur with colonics.

    Here’s to Mastering Your Health.

    Copyright 2010 Chicago Defender

    Dave Montgomery, MD, PhD is a Cardiologist at Northwestern University and a sought after Speaker and Health Coach.


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