5 Ways to Reduce your Risk of Stroke
Did you know that 24 people a day will have a stroke in New Zealand? Strokes are commonplace but they are by no means inevitable. It may be impossible to reverse your family health history but the good news is that by taking certain preventative measures one can reduce the risks of stroke.
To begin with you need to equip yourself with the necessary knowledge. You should be aware of the things that could be sabotaging your health. It is these aspects that you need to arrest and watch out for. The following tips will go a long way in ensuring that a person’s risk of getting stroke is minimised significantly.
Keep your Blood Pressure under Control
High blood pressure doubles or triples the risk of getting a stroke. This is a medical discovery that affects both men and women. How best a person is able to regulate their blood pressure reduces the chances of stroke, which is the main difference between men and women. It is advisable to maintain a blood pressure of below 120/80 although in some cases an average of 140/90 is acceptable.
To maintain the acceptable blood pressure level, there are a number of things you ought to do. Reduce salt intake to about a tablespoon a day. High cholesterol foods such as ice creams and cheese should be avoided. Increase fruit servings to an average of four to five a day coupled with low-fat dairy products and whole grains.
It is also important to include a regular thirty-minute workout routine to keep your body active. Additionally, there are some bad habits you need to drop, and these include smoking and skipping blood pressure medication if you are supposed to take them.
Lose Weight Immediately
The moment you feel your blood pressure begin to rise then it is time to watch your weight. Get into a manageable weight loss program immediately. You should include an exercise routine in your weekly plan. Here are some simple exercises that you can engage in to achieve steady weight loss.
• Take morning walks around the neighborhood for at least thirty minutes
• Start swimming lengths at your local pool
• When possible, bike to your destination instead of driving
Get your Heart Checked
A healthy heart is a guarantee for a long healthy life. Conditions such as atrial fibrillation can cause increased risks of stroke when the blood clots travel to the brain causing a stroke. This problem increases the risk of a stroke almost five folds.
Always visit a doctor immediately when you begin experiencing signs such as shortness of breath. Blood thinners may be prescribed to help alleviate the problem. It is important to have a qualified physician guide you through this kind of treatment.
Have your Blood Sugar Checked
Patients who have diabetes are likely to have higher chances of getting a stroke. High blood sugar levels damage blood vessels, which in turn are responsible for blood clots. As discussed earlier, blood clots are an enemy of stroke especially when they travel to the brain.
To achieve an appropriate blood sugar level, one has to monitor their blood sugar as directed by the doctor. This should be even more serious for people whose families have diabetic problems. Exercise regularly, eat a balanced diet and get appropriate medication whenever necessary.
Some of the lifestyle choices that people make are responsible for certain conditions that exist today. Research reveals that smoking acts as a catalyst to blood clot formation in a number of ways. With time, smoking causes your blood to thicken. It also leads to the increase of plaque in the arteries. Coupled with an unhealthy diet, this can be a major cause of stroke.
It is important to quit smoking gradually if you are unable to stop at once. You should talk to your doctor for the best advice on how to quit smoking. Attend counseling sessions, use smoking aids and nicotine pills to make the turnaround. Persist with the desire to quit. A proper diet, nonsmoking habit, and regular exercise will bring you closer to a stroke-free life.
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