Making changes in your lifestyle today can help reduce your chances of experiencing future health issues, such as stroke. For example, “Blood pressure is one of the biggest modifiable risk factors in connection with stroke,” says Dr. Eric Adelman, assistant professor of neurology at the University of Michigan. And there are other lifestyle changes that can help in preventing stroke and improve your overall health:
- Manage diabetes. Keep your blood sugar levels within a target range.
- Take aspirin or a blood thinner if recommended by your doctor.
- Take your medicine exactly as prescribed.
- Do not smoke or allow others to smoke around you.
- Limit alcohol to two drinks a day for men and one drink a day for women.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Raise your heart rate by getting at least 30 minutes of exercise (walking, swimming, cycling, etc.) on most days of the week.
- Eat a balanced diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in cholesterol, saturated fats and salt.
The University of Michigan Samuel and Jean Frankel Cardiovascular Center is the top-ranked heart and heart surgery program among Michigan hospitals. To learn more, visit the Heart and Vascular page on UofMHealth.org.