Thursday, April 9, 2009

Want To Prevent Stroke? Take 4 Steps

Stroke is a major cause of disability and death in the U.S. and worldwide. Modern medicines like statins (and old ones like aspirin) are helpful in preventing both initial and secondary stroke in patients at risk. But, are there simple things you can do to lower risk?

Yes, you say! Well, indeed, you are correct. Twenty thousand men and women (age range, 40–79) without histories of stroke or heart attack were recently analysed in the U.K. for the effect of 4 simple behaviors: not smoking, regular physical activity, moderate alcohol intake (1–14 drinks weekly), and high fruit and vegetable intake .

Patients engaging in 3 or 4 of the activities were significantly less likely (2 times!) to suffer a stroke over the next decade. Patients who slipped up a bit and only did 1 or 2 of the activities did have significant stroke risk, though not quite as much as those who sat on the sideline and engaged none of the behaviors.

So, grab the baton and step up to prevent stroke. As always, questions and comments are welcome.

1 comment:

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