Stroke; It’s the sudden death of some brain cells due to lack of oxygen when the blood flow to the brain is impaired by blockage or rupture of an artery to the brain. A stroke occurs when blood flow to part of the brain is disrupted mostly caused by a clot or something else that blocks the flow. A stroke is also referred to as a cerebrovascular accident (CVA).
Tips to reduce your risk of stroke
Here are five ways to start reining in your risks today to avoid CVA, before it has the chance to strike.
1. Lower Your Blood Pressure
High blood pressure is the leading cause of strokes. It’s the reason for more than half of them. If it’s not managed well, high blood pressure can make you 5 to 6 times more likely to have a stroke. It can thicken the artery walls and make cholesterol or other fats build up and form plaques. One of those can break and block your brain’s blood supply. Lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise and eating healthy, can help.
2. Eat a Healthy Diet
A healthy diet can go a long way towards lowering blood pressure, which is one of the main risk factors of stroke. Being overweight or obese, eating too much salt, and eating too little potassium can drive up blood pressure. Eat a diet that is high in potassium, fruits and vegetables, whole grains, low-fat dairy products, and reduced saturated fats.
3. Lose weight
Obesity, as well as its complications including high blood pressure and diabetes, raises your odds of developing the disease. If you’re overweight, losing as little weight can have a real impact on your risk of developing stroke. Increase the amount of exercise you do with activities like walking, golfing, or playing tennis every single day.
4. Get Regular Exercise
Daily regular exercise is associated with improving wide range of health problems, including CVA. Exercise helps prevent stroke by reducing the risk factors, such as high blood pressure and obesity. Physical activity, even if it is mild to moderate, is crucial in giving yourself the best chance of avoiding a stroke.
Take a walk around your neighborhood every morning, start a fitness club with friends, take the stairs instead of an elevator, reduces your risk of developing CVA.
5. Quit smoking and limit alcohol
Smoking increases your risk of developing strokes. Nicotine in cigarettes raises blood pressure, and carbon monoxide in smoke lowers the amount of oxygen in your blood. Secondhand smoke can increase your chances of stroke. Drinking a little alcohol may decrease your risk of stroke. Studies show that if you have about one drink per day, your risk may be lower. Once you start drinking more than two drinks per day, your risk goes up very sharply.