Lifestyle Risk Factors
Live A Healthier Life
Up to 80% of Strokes are Preventable
Stroke is largely a lifestyle condition. Meaning it is a condition caused through living an unhealthy lifestyle. Similar to conditions like type II diabetes and heart disease.
In this section we will dive into the daily habits and behaviors that will help keep you healthy, protect you from having a life altering stroke, and help you live your best life.
Eating a healthy diet rich in whole foods is no doubt one of, if not the most important part of living healthfully and decreasing your stroke risk. The type of foods you eat directly impact your health and wellness. For most Americans, eating the standard American diet consists of large amounts of highly processed foods rich in saturated fats, sugar, and salt and low in fiber, nutrients, and antioxidants.
Eating a diet rich in processed foods increases blood pressure and cholesterol and increases your risk of developing conditions like heart disease, obesity, and type II diabetes. All of which dramatically increases your risk of having a stroke. (Heartandstroke)
For many, exercise and/or daily physical activity is the magic pill they have been looking for. When it comes to boosting your health and decreasing stroke risk, being active everyday is a MUST!
Performing the recommended 150 minutes of physical activity or exercise a week provides immediate benefits of: (CDC)
Decreased blood pressure
Decreased stress and anxiety
Better blood sugar regulation
Improves sleep quality
Stress is a physiological response to any type of demand. Stress affect us all and not all forms of stress are bad. However, being chronically stressed can negatively affect your health and put you at a higher risk for having a stroke. (NIMH)
Two behaviors that can dramatically increase your risk for having a stroke is smoking and drinking excessive alcohol. (stroke.org.uk)
Drinking more than the recommended amounts of alcohol increases blood pressure and contributes to many conditions such as type II diabetes and A-fib which increase your stroke risk.
Smoking creates fatty build-up deposits in your blood vessels which can lead to clots forming and traveling to the brain causing a stroke.
Get More Sleep
Sleep deprivation has also been linked to increased risk for stroke. This is largely due to sleep deprivation leading to high blood pressure which is the strongest risk factor for stroke. Do your body a favor and get a good night's sleep. (heart.org)
Maintain A Healthy Weight
Being overweight or obese increases your risk of having a stroke. Excess fatty tissue causes systemic inflammation which can decrease blood flow and increase your risk for blockage. Being overweight or obese also increases your risk of developing hypertension, hyperlipidemia, left ventricular hypertrophy, and type II diabetes all of which increase your stroke risk. (obesityaction.org)