Reduce your mum’s stroke risk by ensuring she makes these changes in her life

Old habits die hard but you need to convince your mum to adopt some healthy habits to save her from the scare of stroke.
Learn the signs and symptoms of stroke. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
IANS Updated: 11 Apr 2020, 09:17 am IST
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When you take care of what you eat and how long you workout then why do you take your mum’s health for granted? Do you know, ignoring her unhealthy lifestyle preferences can increase her chances to get a stroke? But fret not because according to recent research you can save your mom by making her do a few lifestyle changes.       

Women in their 50s, kindly take note. Middle age may not be too late for you to reduce stroke risk by quitting smoking, daily exercising, maintaining weight and making healthy food choices, according to a new study.

In general, women are more likely than men to have a stroke, die from stroke and have poorer health and physical function after a stroke said the study published in the American Stroke Association.

Positivity, a healthy meal, and an active lifestyle can help you avoid a stroke. Image courtesy: Shutterstock.

The average age of the first stroke in women is 75 years
Based on this information, researchers theorised that making mid-life lifestyle changes might help reduce stroke’s burden among women.

“We found that changing to a healthy lifestyle, even in your 50s, still has the potential to prevent strokes. Women who made lifestyle modifications in middle-age reduced their long-term risk of total stroke by nearly a quarter and ischemic stroke, the most common type of stroke, by more than one-third,” said lead author Goodarz Danaei from Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health in Boston, US.

For the findings, researchers analysed the Nurses’ Health Study, which includes health information on nearly 60,000 women who enrolled at an average age of 52 and continued in the study for an average of 26 years.

Dietary changes and some physical activity might help in reducing chances of stroke
Researchers studied the impact on stroke risk from smoking cessation, exercising 30 minutes or more daily and gradual weight loss if women were overweight.

Quit smoking now to reduce chances of stroke. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

They also studied the impact of making recommended dietary modifications that emphasize eating more fish, nuts, whole grains, fruits and vegetables and less red meat, no processed meat, and less alcohol.

During the 26-year follow-up, the research team found that 4.7% of women with no lifestyle interventions had a stroke of any type; 2.4% had an ischemic stroke, and 0.7% had a hemorrhagic stroke.

Engaging in the three non-dietary interventions — smoking cessation, daily exercise and weight loss — was estimated to reduce the risk of total stroke by 25% and ischemic stroke by 36%.

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Sustained dietary modifications were estimated to reduce the risk of total stroke by 23%.

Researchers also found that increasing fish and nut consumption and reducing unprocessed red meat consumption appeared to have positive impacts on reducing stroke risk.

While this was an observational study that included mostly white, middle-aged women.

Danaei said: 

We also estimate that exercising 30 minutes or more daily may reduce the risk of stroke by 20%.

So, keep a track of your mom’s lifestyle choices and help her incorporate some healthy habits as per her convenience. 

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