7 Things You Need to Know to Prevent a Stroke
Even if you have a healthy lifestyle, it's a good idea to find out if you have a family history of strokes so you can take the necessary preventive measures. Learn more in this article.
Strokes are one of the most common neurological events.
Despite being most prevalent in people over 65 years old, we must not forget that young people aren’t exempt from this serious medical problem.
There are two types of strokes: ischemic and hemorrhagic.
Now, neither type can be prevented completely. All of us, no matter your age, sex, or race, can have a stroke at some point.
However, what is in your hands is the percentage risk factor that is directly associated with your lifestyle and habits.
We all know, to some extent, that there are certain things we do in our day to day lives that affect our health: smoking, being too sedentary, etc.
It’s just a matter of being conscious of the risks, taking real responsibility, and managing the factors we’ll explain below as much as possible.
Start today: take care of yourself better and live in harmony with your body and emotions to lower your risk of stroke.
1. Control your blood pressure
Blood pressure is a key factor in preventing heart attacks and strokes.
The problem is that we often don’t manage this important health indicator.
Sometimes we associate headaches, a racing heart, or dizziness to plain tiredness from our everyday lives. If you experience these symptoms, it is important to take taking the proper, reasonable step of seeing a doctor to manage our blood pressure.
How can I lower my blood pressure?
- Consume less salt.
- Avoid foods high in cholesterol.
- Increase your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as whole grains (they are high in fiber).
- Don’t sit as much.
- If you’re a smoker, start making changes today.
2. Manage your weight
Obesity, along with complications associated with being overweight (high blood pressure, diabetes…) increase your likelihood of stroke.
How to lose weight the healthy way
Before starting a diet plan, consult your doctor to find the best way to do it (sometimes weight problems are related to hormonal issues that need to be controlled).
- Do aerobic exercise.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Have 5 small meals throughout the day.
- Eat fruit, vegetables, and sources of fiber like oats or chia seeds.
- Keep saturated fats out of your diet.
3. Know your family history
Some people have a higher risk of stroke than others. We’re not just talking about lifestyles; sometimes a significant factor is your family history.
It’s always a good idea to know your family history: your grandparents, aunts and uncles, and of course parents.
If there is a history of death related to strokes, this information should be passed on to your doctor so you can take the proper precautions if at all possible.
We should be clear that having a family history of stroke doesn’t mean you’re going to have one: it increases your risk, but it’s not certain.
“Read this too: Citrus Fruits Prevent Obesity and Strokes, According to Study”
4. The best diet for preventing strokes
It’s true, managing your stress, regularly exercising, and eating a healthy, varied diet can help you prevent a multitude of illnesses.
In this case, to reduce your likelihood of stroke, you should include the following foods in your diet:
- Brussel sprouts
- Melons and watermelons
- Sardines in olive oil
- Green tea
5. Watch out for atrial fibrillation
Atrial fibrillation is a type of arrhythmia where your heart beats abnormally.
This issue happens when blood clots are formed in your heart. They can travel to the brain and produce a stroke.
If you notice tiredness, palpitations, headache, or trouble breathing, you need to tell your doctor right away.
6. The importance of preventing and treating diabetes
Diabetes makes strokes worse.
When oxygen supply is cut off, there usually are other arteries that can work as a bypass to minimize the effect.
However, if you have diabetes, your blood vessels may be hardened or blocked due to arteriosclerosis.
This makes it harder for blood to get to your brain.
7. Stop smoking
You’ve already heard us say how important it is to stop smoking.
But we don’t want to leave without emphasizing once more what a risk this extremely harmful habit is for your health, and especially your cerebrovascular health.
Tobacco speeds up the formation of blood clots: your blood thickens, plaque builds up in your arteries, and your likelihood of stroke goes up.
Start right now to live better, take care of yourself, and enjoy better health and quality of life.
Principal image courtesy of wikiHow.com