Although I’d worked in hospitals, and studied anatomy for years, I never appreciated the value-add of a colon in hydration. In fact, when you have a colon, almost all of your body’s fluid intake comes through that. So….without a colon, we have to be extra careful to make sure we get the fluids we need. It took me a couple of months to realize that. After surgery I was feeling so great, but one week I was suddenly tired again and had trouble concentrating. I wasn’t getting enough fluids! Water is great, if you can drink it plain or mixed with something like Crystal Light, but there’s an argument to be made for getting extra electrolytes. I read somewhere that it’s good to supplement 50% of our water intake with an electrolyte-infused drink. Gatorade is often used as an example, but it’s not my favorite. You can drink something like Propel (which they even use for colonoscopy preps now) or SmartWater (which I prefer). I also really like iced tea, which is full of potassium, but no sodium. That being said, one member of my CCFA support group has an eight-year-old daughter that had her colon removed at age six. To have her get the sodium she needed they over-salted all of her dishes, and then encouraged her to drink almost anything she wanted. I’m never without my water bottle now. There’s many ways to get the nutrition we need, but getting enough fluids is the most important of all.