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Spring Clean Your System

While you’re cleaning out your garage and cabinets this spring, keep this in mind: it’s not just your living space that needs a spring cleaning. So does your digestive system — to clear your body of toxins that can cause serious diseases.


Your digestive system has a lot to break down, especially if you’re eating a lot of processed foods, and spring is an ideal time to give your dietary habits an overhaul.


Start the day with a breakfast that’s low in fat, high in fiber and loaded with vitamins and minerals. This will improve your energy and concentration levels in the morning.


Keep your energy levels high throughout the day by including a source of lean protein with each meal (skinless poultry, lean meat, fish, beans, nuts) and opting for healthier snacks providing slow-release energy (whole-wheat pitas with hummus or almond butter on whole-grain bread).


The best way to give your gut a rest is to avoid processed foods and concentrate on whole fresh foods. Now that spring is here, more vegetables and fruits will be coming to market, making this a perfect time to build a deliberate routine and improve your digestive health.


Healthy vegetables available in the spring include asparagus, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and spinach. Take advantage of these seasonal foods, which may now be fresher, cheaper and richer in nutrients. If you eat more fruit and vegetables, drink more water and less alcohol, and become more intentional about what you’re eating and drinking, you’ll find yourself with higher energy levels and better overall health.


And remember, drink at least 6 - 8 glasses of water a day. Even slight dehydration can cause side-effects like fatigue and headaches. Drinking more water will make you feel better, and can also help you eat less. And don’t forget to talk to your doctor to make sure your diet and lifestyle are aligned for long-term health.


Dr. James C. Strobel MD
Gastroenterology of Southern Indiana

Dr. Strobel joined GSI in July of 1997. He received his undergraduate degree from Indiana University in Bloomington, and his medical degree from Indiana University in Indianapolis. Following this, Dr. Strobel completed his residency in Internal Medicine, and after three years of additional training, completed his fellowship in Gastroenterology at Duke University in Durham, North Carolina. Dr. Strobel is board certified in both Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. He is married and the proud father of three children. In his free time, he enjoys basketball, baseball, reading, and spending time with his family.


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