- Tracey Purvis
Avoiding the strike of a stroke
Updated: Mar 15, 2019
If you’re like most people, you think that ‘strokes’ are something that the elderly can get, and therefore, in the meantime, don’t think of what causes stroke, and what you can do to prevent stroke from occurring until it may be too late. Although it is true that the risk of stroke increases once we reach the age of 55 and then again at the age of 75, there are other risk factors even more significant that we can manage that reduce our risk of stroke. Our lifestyle choices such as diet, our level of activity, use of cigarettes, alcohol, street drugs, arguably contribute to our ‘stroke’ profile in a more direct way than our family history, age, and gender.
These lifestyle choices determine our health profile. What do I mean by that? Well, what we eat and how active we are directly contributes to how healthy we are; impacts our blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar, body weight and composition.
Our body is a machine and what we put into it directly impacts how it runs. If we pollute a machine, let’s say we put diesel into a gasoline engine, it’s not going to run efficiently, well, really not at all. The same goes for our bodies, and deep down we ALL know this. We know we can’t eat food from a box, that is ‘preserved’ to ‘keep from going bad on the shelf’ for 1, 2 years or who knows how long without having some negative consequence on our health, right? We can’t act surprised when disease is among us.
The most common cause for stroke, or cerebrovascular accident (CVA), is a narrowing or blockage in an artery most often caused by plaque build-up called atherosclerosis, or a blood clot. A transient Ischemic attack (TIA) also called a mini-stroke, has the same cause as a stroke but the effects or symptoms are only temporary and not long-lasting or permanent like seen in a stroke. Both are medical emergencies and require urgent transport to hospital for diagnostic imaging and treatment. With TIAs, 1 in 3 are a warning of an impending stroke. So it is an opportunity to alter and improve diet, activity, and manage blood pressure and other controllable risk factors.
Simple things like drinking more water daily, eating fish twice a week or supplementing daily with Omega 3, walking daily, sleeping 7-8 hours and going to bed at a regular time, and eating a wide variety of fruits and vegetables will improve your health profile and decrease your risk of stroke.
Lastly, join me and thousands of others in bringing funds and awareness to the Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada! I am part of a team that is raising funds and Riding the ‘Big Red Bike’ on May 6th, 2019! It’s going to be fun!!! Check it out! You can register yourself, or donate to me and my team by searching my name under Donate. Thank you!!