Friday, July 15, 2016

5 Ways To Prevent Stroke

May is national stroke awareness month in the United States. According to the national Stroke Association, approximately 800,000 adults in the US suffer from a stroke every year. Strokes are also potentially lethal and can also lead to a number of problems associated with mobility and speech.

A stroke is caused by a blockage to the brain. They often occur as a result of unhealthy habits including poor diets and lack of exercise. Many lifestyle choices that contribute to an increased risk for heart disease also put people at risk for having a stroke. For the elderly, these problems are only compounded.
Certain risk factors can increase your chances of suffering from a stroke. Working with a qualified healthcare professional to identify your personal risks is the best way to ensure that you are taking the right steps for prevention. Follow these tips to prevent strokes from you or others.

Identify Risk Factors

The US National Stroke Association stated that one of the most important things older Americans can do to reduce their risk of stroke is to pinpoint any hazards that contribute to a higher chance of developing a dreaded brain clot. There are lots of factors that can make people more vulnerable to the threat of strokes.
Some of the risk factors are simply out of our control. This includes possible genetic and environmental variables. But understanding these risks are still an integral part of determining prognosis. Additionally, chronic health conditions like arrhythmia or heart disease can increase risk factors.
Many lifestyle factors are also major concerns when it comes to calculating the probability of a stroke. Once you have identified the inherent factors relating to your medical history and genetics, you can start take preventative measures accordingly.

Lose Weight

Excess weight loss leads to many adverse health problems that increase your risk for stroke. This includes diabetes and high blood pressure. According to Harvard Medical School, “losing just ten pounds can have a significant impact on reducing your risk for stroke.” For average person, it is recommended that they limit their caloric intake between 1,500 and 2,000 calories per day. A good rule of thumb is to maintain a body mass index near 25. If you follow both of these guidelines you are well on your way to weight loss and better health.

Get Lots of Exercise

Regular physical activity is especially important for older people. The benefits are undeniable. You can lower your blood pressure, maintain your physical health and most importantly reduce your chances of having a stroke. Activities can include anything from walking and swimming to dancing and tennis.
The most important thing is to be consistent. Keeping a regular exercise routine is integral to get all the benefits exercise has to offer. Harvard Medical School’s Journal of Medicine recommends that exercising for 30 minutes a day 5 to 6 times a week is the best way to reduce your risk of suffering from a stroke. Exercise is also an important factor controlling your weight. 

Drink Red Wine

Remember, excessive drinking can be very detrimental to your health, so drink in moderation. That being said, having a glass of red wine can be beneficial to your heart.
When it’s time to relax and enjoy a drink, red wine beats the other choices. It contains plenty of antioxidants to maintain healthy HDL cholesterol levels, the good kind of cholesterol. It is also rich in resveratrol, which is known to aid healthy heart and brain function.

Don’t Smoke

Cigarettes and cigars on a rare occasion may not be harmful, but having a smoking habit can be deadly. The number of health risks you face increase dramatically when you smoke. Although quitting can be very hard, it’s crucial for seniors to do so.
Despite the fact that smoking increases your risk of stroke, it also makes it harder to exercise. There are many free programs and resources available to help you stop smoking. It’s never too late to make a healthy change in your habits.
Taking the first step is the most important part of quitting. Speak with your doctor, a friend or caregiver to come up with a plan. Total Home Health can connect you with experienced health care experts who are ready to help you live a long, healthy and fulfilling life. Breaking the habit can be a long process, but having support and guidance is a priceless resource.

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