When you become old, you become more susceptible to a brain stroke. This is also true if you have someone in the family or a close relative who has already had a stroke. Even though you really can’t stop aging or wipe clean your family history, there are many ways in which you can protect yourself from the chances of having a stroke. Learn about how you can make yourself safer:
Reduce High Blood Pressure
Uncontrolled hypertension could increase the chance of a stroke by as much as four times in both men and women. You should aim to bring down your blood pressure to as close as possible to the ideal of 120/80 mmHg by close monitoring, medical treatment, and lifestyle changes.
Exercise for at least 30-45 minutes, quit smoking and switch to a healthy diet. Cut out the salt from your diet to less than 1,500 mg daily; avoid foods that contain large amounts of cholesterol like cheese, burgers, ice cream, red meat, etc.
Obesity, including its fallouts like diabetes and high blood pressure, is a leading cause of strokes. Even reducing as little as 10 pounds can make a positive impact on your risk of having a stroke. You should aim to keep your body mass index at 25 or even less.
Depending on your BMI and activity level, you should cut down on your consumption to less than 2000 calories. Be significantly more active and try to exercise regularly, walk, or play a game to burn off the calories and keep your system healthy. You don’t have to hit the gym and start lifting weights; any exercise that has you breathing hard but leaves you in a position to talk is good enough. If you don’t have 30-45 minutes to spare at one go, you can exercise in several 15-minute sessions.
Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) technology is also being used to assist DNA sequencing even with very small samples of DNA to study the genetic linkages in brain strokes.
Consume Alcohol in Moderation
Strange as it may sound, having a drink daily actually lowers the risk of having a stroke. However, the key lies in drinking moderately; anything more than just one drink per day can sharply increase your risk level of strokes. The portion sizes to watch out for are 5 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, and 1.5 ounces of any hard liquor. Your preference should be for wine because it has an ingredient; resveratrol, which acts to protect the brain and the heart.
Treat Atrial Fibrillation and Diabetes
Blood clots that can form in the heart due to atrial fibrillation can cause strokes when they travel to the brain so they should be treated on top priority. Typically, doctors will prescribe blood thinners like aspirin or warfarin that reduce clot formation and the chances of strokes. Diabetes too results in the blood vessels getting damaged over time and increases the probability of formation of blood clots. Diabetes is best managed by a combination of diet, exercise, and medicines.
Your brain runs every organ in the body and you should take good care of it. Follow the aforementioned tips, visit a doctor after every couple of months for monitoring your health, and lead a healthy lifestyle to prevent brain stroke.
Author: Thomas Sujain