Allowing a physician to explore your colon for early signs of cancer is a piece of cake. It's the prep that's the worst part.

Colonoscopy prep can mean drinking up to a gallon of a laxative to clean out your bowels.

Now doctors and scientists are working with Colonary Concepts to make the prep process taste better.

One of the researchers is Dr. Douglas Rex of the Indiana University School of Medicine who thinks you might be more inclined if prep was flavored with lemon or white chocolate.

Food bars and shakes that contain laxatives, followed by a sports drink with electrolytes to balance out the system is an example of what the experimental prep would look like.

"We think it's going to be a significant advance in tolerability over the current preparations," said Rex, who specializes in gastroenterology.

Colonoscopy is not the only screening method, but many people who qualify for the procedure don't get it. Some say it's because they can't stomach the prep.

"We're simply trying to make that part of it, which is absolutely essential, we can't get away from it to have an effective colonoscopy, we're just trying to make it easier," said Rex.

If all goes well, the new prep could hit the market within a few years.

The American Cancer Society recommends starting colorectal screening by age 50 or earlier if you're at high risk.