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How to Reduce Risk of Stroke

Doctor checking a senior woman’s blood pressure and discussing tips on stroke prevention.

A stroke occurs when blood stops flowing to part of the brain. Some stroke survivors may have no physical or mental reminders of the attack, but others have long-lasting paralysis, speech loss or other problems.

Although there are some risk factors for stoke that we are unable to change, such as age or history of stroke in your family, there are some healthy lifestyle habits we can adapt that makes us less likely to experience a stoke. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention finds that, “up to 80% of strokes could be prevented through healthy lifestyle changes and working with your health care team to control health conditions that raise your risk for stroke.”

Keep reading for a few ways you’re able to reduce your risk of stroke.

Tips for Stroke Prevention

Maintain a Healthy Diet: A healthy diet helps your body in numerous ways, one of which is helping you reduce your chance of a stroke. Choose healthy meal and snack options and eat plenty of fruits and vegetables. To help reduce your risk of stroke, make sure your diet is low in sodium and high in potassium.

Include Physical Activity in Your Routine: Physical activity can help you maintain a healthy weight and help your body properly function. It is recommended that adults take part in 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic physical exercise, such as a brisk walk, each week.

Know and Control Blood Pressure, Blood Sugar and Cholesterol: High blood pressure, blood sugar and cholesterol increase your chances of having a stroke. Consult with your healthcare provider and maintain regular testing of these key health indicators.

Quit Smoking and Limit Alcohol Consumption: Cigarette smoking greatly increases your chances of having a stroke, and drinking in excess raises your blood pressure, which can lead to a greater chance of stroke. Don’t start smoking if you don’t already and find tips to quit if you do. For alcohol, limit your drinking to two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women.

Know the Stroke Warning Signs: By learning the early stroke warning signs, you could save your life from a stroke. The National Stroke Association created the acronym “F.A.S.T.” to help you recognize stroke symptoms:

  • F – face drooping
  • A – arm weakness
  • S – speech difficulty
  • T – time to call 911

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