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Stroke Prevention begins with knowing your blood pressure

Posted Dec 12 2009 11:21am

Stroke Prevention Guidelines:

posted by David Dansereau for know-stroke.org

It doesn’t have to be May (Stroke Awareness Month) to review this list of important (and potentially life saving) guidelines:


1. Know your blood pressure. Have it checked at least annually. If it’s elevated, work with your doctor to keep it under control. Having high blood pressure, or hypertension, increases stroke risk four to six times.

2. Find out if you have atrial fibrillation – a type or irregular heartbeat. If left untreated, AF can increase stroke risk four to six times.

3. If you smoke, stop. Smoking doubles stroke risk.

4. If you drink alcohol, do so in moderation. Recent studies have suggested that modest alcohol consumption (up to two glasses of wine or alcohol equivalent) may reduce stroke risk.

5. Find out if you have high cholesterol. High cholesterol can indirectly increase stroke risk by putting people at greater risk of heart disease.

6. If you’re diabetic, follow your doctor’s recommendation carefully to control your diabetes. People with diabetes have a higher stroke risk. This may be due to circulation problems that diabetes can cause.

7. Include exercise in the activities you enjoy in your daily routine. Active people tend to have lower cholesterol levels. Regular exercise also seems to slow down or stop the clogging of blood vessels by deposits.

8. Enjoy a lower sodium (salt), lower fat diet. Too much salt may contribute to high blood pressure and make it more difficult to control. A diet that’s low in fat will likely include vegetables, lean meats such as chicken and fish, low-fat dairy products and a limited number of eggs.

9. Ask your doctor if you have circulation problems which increase your risk for stroke.

10. If you experience any stroke symptoms, seek immediate medical attention. CALL 911! Every minute counts!

Source:National Stroke Association’s Prevention Advisory Board Stroke Prevention Guidelines.

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