shutterstock_262432181_aCqLPff.jpeg (shutterstock_262432181.webp)A stroke is one of the most frightening medical events that can happen to a person, and one of the most dangerous. When someone has a stroke, your brain has been deprived of its much-needed blood supply and has become unable to receive the nutrients and oxygen it needs to function. When the brain is deprived of these essentials, its cells quickly begin to die, and without immediate treatment, permanent damage can occur. In some cases, the stroke is even fatal.

While the idea of a stroke is scary, there is good news -- by adjusting lifestyle and receiving routine care, you can lower your risk for stroke significantly. At Sinai Laser Vein Center, we want our patients to know how they can protect themselves against serious health risks like stroke. Here are four ways you can practice heart stroke prevention in your own life:

1. Understand Your Risks For Stroke

While the technical cause of stroke is always a blockage or interruption of blood flow to the brain, there are a number of reasons why this might occur, commonly including the buildup of fatty deposits called “plaque” in the arteries that carry blood to your brain.

There are a number of factors that can increase your risk of arterial blockage and other venous conditions that lead to stroke, including:

  • Previous diagnosis with heart disease
  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • Having high levels of cholesterol in your blood
  • Diabetes
  • Smoking and consuming alcohol
  • Taking oral contraceptives (birth control pills)
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Having a history of transient ischemic attacks(opens in a new tab)

If any of these factors apply to you, it’s important to understand that your risk for stroke may be increased, and to communicate with your primary care physician or NYC heart disease specialist as soon as possible.

2. Try a Healthy Diet to Prevent Stroke

Because high levels of lipids (fats) and cholesterol in the blood can lead to the buildup of plaque in your arteries, they can strongly contribute to your risk of arterial blockage, and ultimately cause a stroke. Fats and cholesterol are normal, and having some amount of them in your body is essential for your health -- but if your diet includes excessive amounts of fat and cholesterol(opens in a new tab), you could be putting yourself at risk.

Cutting out or minimizing risky foods is a great step, but you can also include brain-healthy foods that lower your risk of stroke, including:

  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Bananas
  • Tomatoes
  • Spinach
  • Whole grain bread
  • And more

3. Introduce Exercise Into Your Routine

We’ve discussed many of the risk factors that may put you in danger of having a stroke, including heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and obesity. If you’re looking to reduce your risk of stroke at the source, exercise is one of the most effective ways to combat all four of those factors. If you aren’t struggling with any of these conditions, daily exercise -- particularly cardiovascular exercise -- is a great way to practice prevention and keep your body healthy. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, hypertension, or heart disease, exercise will be an essential step in managing your condition to ensure a healthy life without symptoms or complications.

4. Don’t Hesitate to See a Specialist

If you fear for your vascular health, there’s no better peace of mind than that which you might feel after discussing your concerns with a vein specialist. You may be displaying symptoms of high blood pressure, venous disease, or other factors that can put you at risk for stroke, but without the input of a specialist, you may be left wondering what’s going on until it’s too late. If you have concerns, don’t ever hesitate to inform your primary care physician and start building a relationship with a trusted vein center near you.

Stroke is a scary prospect, but it is preventable. With professional guidance, understanding, and the knowledge to move forward, you can employ these prevention techniques in your life to feel confident in your healthy veins, brain, and heart.

Looking for a vascular specialist in New York to guide you in lowering your risk of stroke? Our team at Sinai Laser Vein Center is experienced in diagnosing and treating venous disease, and we’re here to help you have confidence in your health. Schedule your MRI appointment today and take the first step toward healthy veins.