High blood pressure: Lifestyle changes to reduce reading
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There are four “main risk factors” to consider when it comes to how likely it is you are going to have a stroke. One of the “single biggest risk factors”, according to the Stroke Foundation, is high blood pressure. High blood pressure is a contributing factor in around half of all stroke incidents. The experts at Stroke Association explained: “Blood pressure is a measure of how strongly the blood presses against the walls of your arteries.
“If this pressure is too high it puts a strain on your arteries and your heart.”
A diagnosis of high blood pressure follows a sustained period of high blood pressure readings over 140/90mmHg.
Around 9.5 million people in the UK have been diagnosed with high blood pressure.
And, worryingly, for every 10 people who are told they have high blood pressure, another seven will not know they have it.
Deceivingly symptomless, high blood pressure can kill millions of people.
Another main risk factor for developing a stroke is being diagnosed with diabetes.
The charity warned that having diabetes can make the arteries “more likely” to get clogged up.
Diabetes describes excess sugar (i.e. glucose) in the blood, which can double a person’s risk of stroke.
Excessive sugar in the blood causes damage to the blood vessels, strengths for synthroid medication causing them to become more stiff.
High blood sugar can also cause a build-up of fatty deposits, increasing the likelihood of a blood clot that can travel to the brain, causing a stroke.
Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can increase the risk of a stroke, but both conditions can be managed to mitigate such an event.
People diagnosed with the condition atrial fibrillation are also at increased risk of a deadly stroke.
Atrial fibrillation (an irregular heart beat) can lead to a clot forming in the heart, increasing the likelihood of a stroke by five times.
The Stroke Association explained: “In atrial fibrillation, your heartbeat is irregular and may be abnormally fast.
“The heart might not empty itself of blood at each beat, and a clot can form in the blood left behind.”
If a clot is formed inside of the heart, it can travel towards the brain.
Finally, the fourth major risk factor for a stroke is having high cholesterol.
High cholesterol increased the risk of the arteries becoming clogged up.
Although the liver creates cholesterol for necessary functions throughout the body, eating too much saturated fat can increase cholesterol levels.
Too much cholesterol can embed along artery walls, causing them to narrow as a consequence.
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