Some stroke risk factors are genetic or hereditary. Risk has been found to be higher for people with a family history of stroke and much higher for people who have already had a transient ischemic stroke (TIA). TIA is a short episode (of a few minutes to 24 hours) of stroke-like symptoms.
Race and age are both major factors. African Americans, for example, have nearly twice the risk of whites. Scientists link this to the higher incidence of excess weight, diabetes and high blood pressure among African Americans, particularly women. And, although stroke affects people at any age, including fetuses in the womb, the risk doubles for each decade of life after the age of 55.
High blood pressure, heart disease and diabetes are the major controllable stroke risk factors. Irregular heart beats and valve defects can cause blood clots breaking loose and traveling to the brain. And diabetes not only affects blood sugar levels, it can also weaken blood vessels throughout the body, including the brain.
A person’s risk increases greatly with the number and severity of risk factors. But, you can overcome your stroke risk factors by taking control over your own health and fitness.
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Note: The information contained on this website is not intended to be prescriptive. Any attempt to diagnose or treat an illness should come under the direction of a physician who is familiar with nutritional therapy.