The chances of having a stroke greatly increase the older you get and most people know this fact. What not everyone knows is that there are preventative measures you can take to reduce the risk of a stroke as well. You may not be able to make yourself younger, but there are at least 8 ways to prevent strokes that apply to just about anyone.
8. Don't Take up Smoking
The number of harmful chemicals found in cigarettes is enough to make me want to stay away from them. I've seen too many people get hooked on cigarettes. They seem to never get enough and spend a lot of their time coughing and hacking. The nicotine alone causes many health risks that greatly increase a person's chance of having a stroke.
7. Reduce the Amount of Stress in Your Life
If you have had a rough day at work, then it might be a good idea to steer clear of additional things that will only aggravate the situation. My husband changed jobs because he was under so much stress that it caused him to have two heart attacks, both before he was 40. Try to stick with people and do things that aren't stressful. Stress raises blood pressure and this is never a good thing.
6. Lower Blood Pressure
As you already know, reducing stress lowers blood pressure, which lessens the pressure exerted on arteries and blood vessels within the body. This is helpful because the more pressure there is on your arteries and blood vessels, the more likely it is that one will burst and cause you to have a stroke. Some individuals have to go so far as to taking medication to lower their blood pressure. I'd much rather do that then take my chances with having a debilitating stroke.
5. Get More Physical Activities Lined up
You don't have to necessarily run right out and join a gym, but sometimes this is the only way people can get motivated to be more active. Take up walking in the evenings. Get the dog to go with you are gather a group of friends and make it a community walk. Start gardening or doing yard work more often. Anything to get your body moving a bit more will help. Sitting on the couch or behind a computer all day isn't going to keep you healthy.
4. Change Your Eating Habits
Are you a junk food junkie? Do you live for fast food? Are most of your meals eaten in the car or very quickly? Try making a list of all the junk food you eat during the week and write down the number of times you eat at a fast food restaurant. Cutting these food sources out of your diet will be better for your heart, which means it won't have to work as hard to keep you going. When your heart begins to overwork itself, blood pressure goes up and we know what can happen next. Right?
3. Limit the Amount of Salt Consumed
People who have had heart issues in the past know how important it is to try to lower the amount of salt they ingest. Individuals with heart problems have difficulty with water retention when they consume too much salt. This build-up of water causes an increase in blood pressure, thus increasing the chances of a stroke.
2. Change Your Diet
Reducing fat intake, eating the appropriate amount of calories, and making sure to eat the right kinds of foods will help you maintain a healthy body weight. Taking charge of your diet will allow you to loose weight too, if need be. An increase in weight raises a person's chance of having a stroke, so keeping it at a healthy level is very beneficial.
1. Know How to Relax
Being able to relax has a number of benefits. Your heart rate will slow down, any stress that has built up will reduce, and your blood pressure will become lower too. The more ways you can make yourself relax, the better it is for your body and your health.
Most of these 8 ways to prevent strokes end up pointing to the same thing; reducing blood pressure. Ultimately, if you can keep your blood pressure low and eat right, preventing a stroke will be much easier. What are some other ways that you know of for preventing strokes?
Top Photo Credit: ConstructionDealMkting