A diet common in coastal areas of Southern Europe, particularly one with lots of olive oil and nuts, cuts the risk of stroke and other major cardiovascular problems by 30% among high-risk people, according to a new study. There’s a large body of research linking a Mediterranean diet, one heavy on fruits, vegetables, fish and beans, to heart and cardiovascular health. The participants in the study, who were between 55 and 80 years old, didn’t have cardiovascular disease when they enrolled in the study, but were at high-risk for developing it because they had diabetes, were smokers, had high blood pressure, abnormal cholesterol, had strong family history of stroke and heart problems or were obese. The study proved that olive oil significantly lowered the risk of stroke and other major cardiovascular problems.
Our friends at San Bio have been doing fantastic work to improve the outcome of stroke survivors. This morning, The San Jose Mercury News wrote an article about their stem cell stroke therapy research.
REACH Program has touched the lives of stroke survivors in Santa Clara County. Here is their website :http://www.foothill.edu/al/reach.php
Please take a moment to watch this inspirational video. To learn more about the program and enroll in courses, please contact Linda DiNucci, the REACH Program Director at (650) 949-6961. Thanks!
A stroke is a medical emergency, and anyone suspected of having a stroke should be taken to a hospital immediately so that tests can be run and the correct treatment can be provided as quickly as possible.
Do you know if the hospitals in your area are prepared to treat stroke? Please visit this link to find Certified Stroke Centers in your area.
The Stroke Awareness Foundation Facebook Page allows our fans to communicate with one another and share their stories. Please become a fan today by visiting our page HERE.
If you have had a stroke or TIA, your chances of having a second stroke are up to 10 times higher than someone who has never had one. In addition to watching for stroke warning signs, here are some steps you can take to understand and minimize your stroke risk factors that can be controlled.
- Work Closely with Your Health Care Professional to control high blood pressure, high cholesterol, atrial fibrillation and diabetes. Your doctor may recommend different medications or procedures to help prevent another stroke. For ischemic strokes, these may include interventions to improve blood flow in arteries that are clogged. If any medication is prescribed, you will need to take them exactly as directed and watch for any side effects that may occur.
- If You Smoke Cigarettes, Stop Smoking. The risk of ischemic stroke in current smokers is double that of nonsmokers. Chemicals in tobacco can get absorbed and damage the blood vessel walls, speed up hardening of the arteries and elevate blood pressure. Stroke risk greatly declines for those who stop smoking, regardless of how long they have smoked in the past.
- Consume Alcohol Sensibly. Regular heaving drinking can raise blood pressure.
- Eat a Healthy Diet. This includes decreasing or eliminating your intake of saturated and trans fats, lowering sodium intake to about 2000mg daily, and eating more fruits and vegetables. Most processed and fast foods should be avoided. Be mindful of your diet and eat as naturally as possible. Take the time to read ingredients or nutrition facts on the labels of food products you purchase.
- Exercise Regularly. Exercise has many beneficial effects on our heart and blood vessels. It strengthens the heart muscle, increases oxygen intake, keeps blood flowing smoothly, lowers blood pressure and helps maintain a healthy weight. Finding time for exercise in your daily routine may seem difficult, but there are easy ways to include it, such as finding a parking spot farther from your destination or taking the stairs instead of using the elevator. Speak to your health care provider for other ways you can increase activity.
- Take Time to Enjoy Life and Lower Stress Levels. Although a certain amount of stress is unavoidable, studies suggest that stress contributes to high blood pressure. By managing stress with exercise, relaxation techniques and counseling, if needed, stroke risk may be reduced.
A stroke, by definition, affects the very organ that gives you insight into what you’re supposed to be doing when it occurs. It is so important for you to share the signs and symptoms with family, friends, neighbors and coworkers so that they can recognize stroke, call emergency services immediately and save your life!
- F: FACE: Ask the person to smile. Does one side of the face droop or look uneven?
- A: ARMS: Ask the person to raise their arms in front of them for 15 seconds. Does one arm falter, drift down, or is unable to move?
- S: SPEECH: Ask the person to repeat a simple sentence, such as “The sky is blue.” Are the words coming out jumbled, in the wrong order, or is the person mute?
- T: TIME to call 9-1-1 IMMEDIATELY for any one of these signs.
Often called “mini-stroke”, TIA’s are Transient Ischemic Attacks that cause stroke symptoms. These symptoms resolve within an hour, usually under 10 minutes, however they should not be taken lightly as they are a warning sign of a full-blown stroke. After experiencing a TIA, 10%-15% of patients have a stroke within 3 months, half occurring within 48 hours. Rapid assessment and treatment initiation can reduce the risk of early recurrent stroke following a TIA by 80%.
Stroke Belt is a name given to a region in the southeastern United States that has been recognized by public health authorities for having an unusually high incidence of stroke (10% higher than the national average!). This region consists of Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee & Virginia. The causes of the elevated incidence of stroke have not been determined. Numerous possible contributing factors have been identified, including hypertension, low socioeconomic status, diet, cultural lifestyle, quality of healthcare facilities & smoking rates.
Studies have found that people with high amounts of lycopene in their blood were 55% less likely to have a stroke than people with low levels. Where do you find lycopene? RAW TOMATOES, RED BELL PEPPERS, WATERMELON & LEAFY GREENS. Try to incorporate at least 4 servings of fruits and veggies during the day for a healthier you!