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Stroke doctors' advice: Avoid these 7 actions at all costs

  • 2 Min To Read
  • 5 months ago

Strokes are a leading cause of death and disability in the United States, according to the American Stroke Association. Many stroke risk factors, such as high cholesterol and high blood pressure, can go unnoticed until it is too late. However, lifestyle changes can significantly reduce the risk of stroke, with an estimated 80% of strokes being preventable through exercise, diet, and other healthy habits, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Stroke doctors emphasize the importance of taking proactive steps to prevent strokes. Adopting a sedentary lifestyle, spending too much time sitting or lying down, is a modifiable risk factor for stroke. Regular physical activity, such as walking, running, biking, or participating in group workout classes, helps keep blood vessels clear of plaque buildup.

High blood pressure is another major risk factor for stroke. It is recommended that individuals monitor their blood pressure regularly, as elevated blood pressure can lead to stroke over time. If high blood pressure were eliminated from the U.S. population, there would be 60% fewer strokes, according to Dr. Anthony Kim from the University of California, San Francisco Stroke Center.

Regular check-ups with a primary care doctor are essential for identifying and managing stroke risk factors. Risk factors like high cholesterol and high blood pressure often have no noticeable symptoms, making routine screenings crucial. Doctors can also assess other risk factors, including gender, race, and personal medical history.

Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption are habits that increase the risk of stroke. Smoking narrows blood vessels over time, potentially leading to blockages in blood flow to the brain. Excessive alcohol use is associated with heart disease and stroke risk. It is recommended that women have no more than one alcoholic drink per day, while men should limit their intake to two drinks.

Maintaining a healthy diet is also important for managing stroke risk. Avoiding foods high in saturated fats, sugar, and salt can help reduce the risk. A diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and moderate amounts of meat is recommended.

Recognizing the signs of a stroke and seeking immediate treatment is crucial. The acronym FAST (facial drooping, arm weakness, speech difficulty, and time to call 9-1-1) can help individuals identify potential strokes. Prompt treatment increases the effectiveness of available stroke treatments.

In conclusion, taking proactive measures such as regular exercise, managing blood pressure, getting routine check-ups, quitting smoking, limiting alcohol consumption, maintaining a healthy diet, and recognizing stroke symptoms can significantly reduce the risk of strokes. By adopting these habits, individuals can take control of their health and potentially prevent a life-threatening stroke.

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