What you can do to reduce the risk of stroke?
Become more physically active. Exercising helps to lower blood pressure (high blood pressure is the single biggest risk factor for stroke), controls weight, helps create a healthy balance of blood fats and improves your body's ability to handle insulin. Aim to do some kind of moderate physical activity for 30 minutes for at least five days of the week.
- Eat a healthy diet. Fresh fruit and vegetables are rich sources of antioxidant vitamins and minerals, which research has found, reduces the risk of stroke. A high consumption of salt has been linked to high blood pressure, while too much saturated fat can lead to atherosclerosis (furring of the arteries).
- Stay a healthy weight. Being overweight is a risk of a stroke.
- Don't smoke. Smoking increases your risk of stroke because it causes atherosclerosis (furring of the arteries) and makes the blood more likely to clot.
- Drink sensibly. Watching your alcohol intake can help you avoid stroke. Avoid heavy drinking, especially drinking large amounts of alcohol in one go, as this can cause blood pressure to soar. Don't drink every day. Try to have at least a couple of alcohol-free days a week.
- Get your blood pressure checked. All adults should have their blood pressure checked at least once every five years (more often is they have high blood pressure), are taking medication or have other underlying conditions.
- Seek advice from your doctor before taking contraceptive pill or going for HRT.
Early rehabilitation is crucial. Every stoke survivor must seek rehabilitation treatment as soon as possible. More »