Morning Mix


Raise awareness and funds for Colorectal Cancer at Spectrum Health's Irish Jig

Irish Jig takes place March 19
Posted at 10:54 AM, Mar 14, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-15 10:25:41-04

Behind lung cancer, colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death in the U.S. Like many diseases, early detection is key in treating cancer, and that point is being made during Colorectal Awareness Month, as well as a special race event hosted by Spectrum Health.

Dr. Martin Luchtefeld along with event specialist Katherine Williams discusses the importance of early detection of colorectal cancer, as well as how people can help spread awareness during Spectrum Health's Irish Jig.

Symptoms of colorectal cancer include:
· Change in bowel habits
· Blood in your stool – especially bright red blood or very dark stool
· Persistent abdominal pain
· Sometimes there are none

There are plenty of ways to screen for colorectal cancer like a colonoscopy, but a CT colonography, sigmoidoscopy, or stool-based screening are also effective.

As of 2021, the age to start preventative screenings has changed to 45. Screenings can start earlier if there is a family history of cancer or symptoms start appearing. The age change is due to a rise in colorectal cancer cases seen in the past couple of decades.

People can decrease their chances of getting colorectal cancer by practicing the following:
· Healthy lifestyle
· Diet rich in fiber
· Avoid diets high in fat
· Limit alcohol
· Stop smoking

One way to kick-start a healthy lifestyle and help raise awareness and funds for colorectal cancer is at Spectrum Health's Irish Jig on March 19.

The race will take place throughout East Grand Rapids starting at 8:30 a.m. Walkers and runners will get race shirts, in addition to prizes for the top runners by age groups, teams, and overall finishers.

Net proceeds from the event go to the Spectrum Health Cancer Center colorectal cancer fund, providing colorectal cancer screenings, prevention, and diagnostic services in West Michigan.

Online registration is open now at a discounted rate through Thursday, March 17, or until 2,500 participants register. The discounted rate is available online: $20 for 12 and younger, and $35 for 13 and older.

Late registration is available online on March 18 and 19 and during event check-in on Friday, March 18 and Saturday, March 10: $25 for 12 and younger, $40 for 13 and older.

Go to to register and to learn more.

Medical Moment is sponsored by Spectrum Health.