More than 700,000 people in the US will suffer from a stroke this year. Yet, current research shows that there are some ways to prevent yourself from experiencing this life-threatening condition.
Read below for five ways to reduce your risk now.
1. Eat Fiber
We know that fiber is good for the health of our heart, but researchers also found that people who get their daily dose of fiber in their diet also reduce their risk for stroke. Why? Turns out that fiber fights troublesome health issues that make stroke more likely, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol and even obesity.
So how much fiber should you get? The recommended daily amount is 25 grams for women and 38 for men. Add fiber slowly to your diet, though, and make sure to add plenty of water, as well. You don’t want to experience bloating!
Is there really a downside to exercising? It helps us loose weight, stay mentally focused and releases serotonin, which makes us feel happy. But researches are also finding that just 20 minutes per day – or 2 hours per week – can significantly reduce your chance of a stroke. In a study with 40,000 women over a 12 year period, women who walked at a moderate pace just 20 minutes per day had a 30 percent decreased incidence of stroke. Women who upped their pace to brisk decreased their risk by 40 percent!
3. Add fish to your diet
Here’s another food to bring to the table – fish! This protein has been touted as being able to lower your chances of developing heart disease, but it wasn’t until researches looked at 38 studies before they saw the link to stroke. They found that people who ate 2-4 servings a week of oily fish had a 6 percent lower risk of having a stroke or mini-stroke, while those who ate 5 or more servings had a 12% reduction. Interestingly, people who took an omega-3 fish oil supplement didn’t receive any benefit.
4. Stop smoking
There’s a million reasons to stop smoking, but add one more. Cigarettes can significantly increase your risk of hypertension – one of the main conditions that lead to strokes. Quit now and your risk of a stroke goes down significantly within 2 years and is at the level of nonsmokers within five.
5. Drink in Moderation
Moderate health use is another one of those health tips we hear again and again. Besides the empty calories that alcohol contains, it can also increase your blood pressure and lead to stroke. What is considered moderate drinking? Limiting the number of drinks to no more than 2 per day.