Stroke: Two Lifestyles That Increase the Risk of Developing a Life-Threatening Condition

Could your daily habits be leading you to brain damage and a shorter life expectancy? What if you had control to eliminate or at least reduce the risks associated with brain attack? Fortunately, such factors exist. According to Dr. Minesh Khatri, one of the biggest risk factors for stroke is smoking or chewing tobacco, reports.

“Cigarette smoke causes fat to build up in the main artery of the neck; it also thickens the blood and makes it more likely to clot.” But what if you don’t smoke? “Even secondhand smoke can affect you,” Dr. Khatri added. So to minimize your risk of stroke, one of the best things you can do for your health is to stay away from cigarette smoke.

Studies have shown that if you quit smoking for 28 days, you are five times more likely to quit for good.” Dr. Khatri also emphasized that a sedentary lifestyle can increase the risk of stroke.

“Your chances of having a stroke can increase if you are overweight,” Dr. Khatri confirmed. “You can reduce your chances by exercising every day. Take a brisk 30-minute walk or do muscle-strengthening exercises such as push-ups and weight training.”

Leading an active lifestyle can reduce the risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes, experts from the National Health Service have confirmed.

“All of these health conditions are risk factors for stroke,” said Dr. Khatri. “Exercise is the miracle cure we’ve always had, but we’ve been neglecting the recommended dose for too long,” the NHS experts said.

The UK Chief Medical Officer’s Physical Activity Guidelines state that adults “should try to be active every day”. This includes at least 150 minutes of physical activity during the week, such as walking or cycling.

“The more you do, the better,” the doctors say. “And participating in activities like sports and exercise will make you even healthier.” For an activity to count toward your 150 minutes of weekly exercise, you need to move fast enough to get your heart rate up.

This is usually associated with faster breathing and a warmer feeling. Classified as “moderate-intensity activity,” any activity in which you cannot sing counts. However, you can maintain your health by performing moderate physical activity.

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Written by Emma Miller

I am a registered dietitian nutritionist and own a private nutrition practice, where I provide one-on-one nutritional counseling to patients. I specialize in chronic disease prevention/ management, vegan/ vegetarian nutrition, pre-natal/ postpartum nutrition, wellness coaching, medical nutrition therapy, and weight management.

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