Among older adults, one of the leading causes of long-term disability is stroke. However, by adopting a healthy lifestyle, you can lower the risk of stroke. To help prevent strokes, there’s no time like the present to start working on a healthier you – especially if strokes run in your family.
To help you manage your stroke risk – or the stroke risk of a loved one – start implementing healthy habits. What kind of healthy habits are we referring to? Please keep reading for more information.
Stress Levels Should Be Reduced
Who wouldn’t like a little less stress in their lives? Here are some stress-reducing, relaxing tips:
- Try medication or supplements
- Notice how your body reacts to stress
- Set realistic, healthy goals
- Consider a support group
- Relax through breathing exercises, a long hot bath, etc.
- Speak with your therapist
- Develop an exercise regime
Regulate Alcohol Consumption
We are not saying don’t ever drink! However, the risk of a stroke can be increased by an overabundant intake of alcohol. What’s more, alcoholic beverages can contribute to weight gain because there is no nutritional value, and they are usually high in calories.
Existing Health Conditions Should Be Addressed
Any existing health conditions should always be addressed and treated. Eating healthy is nowhere near as effective if you do nothing to care for/correct current health issues. Always, as directed by your doctor, take your prescription medications.
Eat Plenty of Vegetables and Fruit
You’ve heard it before – a healthy, balanced diet, full of nutrients and vitamins, is the healthiest route to take. To get those nutrients and vitamins, make healthy choices where your vegetables and fruits are concerned. High in fiber, but low in fat, fresh produce is a great choice. Spinach and other vegetables that are rich in color (as well as fruits rich in color) are smart options. For a well-rounded meal, pair your produce with low-fat dairy products, lean protein, and whole grains.
We all know we should exercise. Getting motivated to do so, on the other hand, is another story. The thing is, numerous stroke risk factors can be reduced through regular exercise. At least five times a week, try to exercise approximately 30 minutes per day. Take walks, learn yoga, ride a bike, etc.
These days, the dangers of smoking are far more well-known than when people first began smoking. Including stroke, any number of health complications can be a result of smoking. But why? In part, artery plaque increases because your blood becomes thicker. This can inhibit blood flow to the brain if a blood clot develops – a risk that increases with smoking and its effects.
Sodium Intake Should Be Reduced
The risk of stroke and heart disease increase with high blood pressure, which increases if too much salt is present in your diet. Because blood vessels are damaged over time, one of the main risk factors for stroke is high blood pressure. The reason that a stroke risk increases is because those blood vessels to the brain can burst.
Some ways to reduce sodium:
- Particularly with prepackaged foods, read the nutrition labels to check for sodium levels
- Watch your salt portion sizes
- Look for reduced-sodium or low sodium products
Stay Fit and Reduce Stroke Risks in Your Later Years At Green Tree At Westwood
The benefits of living at Green Tree At Westwood are impressive, to say the least. Our senior living community is suitable for many of today’s older adults, whether they are relatively independent or need a bit more care. With so many amenities, it’s almost like living at a resort!
We continually offer new ways to incorporate fun and enjoyable activities into the lives of our residents. We focus on the holistic growth of the body, mind, and soul through our Dimensions Health and Fitness program. Contact us today for more information.