New Stroke Prevention Guidelines Promotes Healthier And Safer Living

There have been many tips and tools for stroke prevention and doctors and experts have recently updated the guidelines to a stroke-free lifestyle.

Stroke prevention is necessary, but the good news is that stroke is slowly starting to decrease. According to an earlier report from the Inquisitr, stroke rates for senior citizens have fallen over the past 20 years.

“(Stroke is) not like one of those many conditions we have that there is no way to prevent it,” Meschia told Reuters Health by phone. Statistically, over 796,000 U.S. adults have a stroke each year. For this reason, stroke prevention is necessary.

“Together with traditional measures like smoking cessation aids, medications and surgeries, the updated recommendations can help people substantially reduce the risk of stroke,” said Dr. James Meschia, who led the group that wrote the new guidelines for stroke prevention.

The new guidelines for stroke prevention include: eat a Mediterranean or DASH-style diet with nuts added. These diets emphasize eating plenty of fruits and vegetables and limiting saturated fats such as red meat, cheese and butter. Monitor blood pressure at home with a portable cuff device and avoid developing high blood pressure by exercising, eating properly and avoiding excess weight. Get your blood pressure checked by your health care provider every year. If you take blood pressure medications and they aren’t working, ask your provider to adjust them. Limit the levels of sodium in the diet and don’t smoke. Smoking and taking oral birth control pills raises stroke risk, as does smoking if you get migraines with aura. Avoid secondhand smoke.

“We have a huge opportunity to improve how we prevent new strokes, because risk factors that can be changed or controlled, especially high blood pressure, account for 90 percent of strokes,” said Dr. James Meschia, a lead author of the new guidelines. “Talking about stroke prevention is worthwhile. In many instances, stroke isn’t fatal but it leads to years of physical, emotional and mental impairment that could be avoided.”

The last time these stroke prevention guidelines were updated was in 2011, so it was about time. “Some of it isn’t as new because it’s pulling together guidelines from other areas,” said Dr. Andrew Russman, a stroke expert.

These new stroke prevention guidelines will further aid in the decrease and decline of stroke patients.

[Image via New York Times]