Stroke prevention is possible through preparation, proper health care

Stroke is the leading cause of serious, long-term disability in the United States. It is the third leading cause of death. Each year, approximately 795,000 people suffer a stroke. However, studies show that up to 80 percent of strokes can be prevented by working with a healthcare professional to reduce personal risk.

May is National Stroke Prevention month and the following stroke prevention guidelines will help you learn how you may be able to lower your risk for a first

stroke.

Talk to your doctor about high blood pressure. High blood pressure is a major stroke risk factor if left untreated. Smoking doubles the risk of stroke. It damages blood vessel walls, speeds up artery clogging, raises blood pressure and makes the heart work harder. Alcohol use has been linked to stroke in many studies. Drink only in moderation.

Cholesterol is a fatty substance in blood that is made by the body. Many people with diabetes have health problems that are also stroke risk factors. A doctor and dietician can help manage diabetes.

Excess weight strains the circulatory system. Exercise five times a week. Maintain a diet low in calories, salt, saturated and trans fats and cholesterol.

For additional stroke information talk to your physician and visit www.cdc.gov.

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